Recent Ceremonies

Couples are constantly introducing me to new ideas for their ceremony (one of the many reasons that I love what I do). I encourage everyone to be imaginative and creative so they end up with a ceremony that is memorable and unique. These ceremonies include a variety of different customs and traditions from weddings I’ve performed recently.

Please feel free to use any content you like in your own wedding ceremony.

THE WEDDING CEREMONY OF
NATALIE
&
BRETT

Ballyowen Golf Club
137 Wheatsworth Road, Hamburg, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / Piano

Music played while guests are seated. Groom's mother (Karen) is pre-seated prior to start of ceremony.

PROCESSIONAL Music / Piano

Music: Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran

Rev. Cash enters and takes his place at front followed by:

  1. Brett's Grandpa Izzy with Aunt Karen (seated in front row/right side)
  2. Bride's parents, MaryAnne & Edward (seated in front row/left side)
  3. Best Man, Andrew (joins Rev. in front)
  4. Groom enters with his father (Arthur); dad takes his seat in front row/right side next to Karen and Groom joins line-up between Rev. and Andrew

Bridal Party enters and proceeds to the front in this order:

These 3 groomsmen enter first alone:

  1. Noah (furthest from Groom)
  2. Adam
  3. Matt

Groomsmen escorting bridesmaids:

  1. Jason & Kelly (he stands next to Matt, Kelly is furthest from bride)
  2. Jared & Beth
  3. Ryan & Mallory
  4. Mike & Sarah
  5. Dov & Erinn
  6. Jordan & Kristen
  7. Jon & Nicole

Matron-of-Honor (Jessica) with flower girl (Charley, she'll sit with Danielle).

Reverend: Please stand.

Music Changes: My Girl by The Temptations

Bride enters, escorted by her Uncle John. They proceed to front where Rev. & Groom greet them. Rev. asks the following question:

Who gives this bride, Natalie, to be married to this groom, Brett?

Uncle John answers "I do" then kisses Natalie and shakes Brett's hand before taking his seat in the front row/left side.

Flowers handed to Jessica and couple is brought together for the start of the ceremony.

GREETING Reverend

Please be seated.

Welcome! Good afternoon, family and friends.
We are here to honor a very special couple in their journey of love & marriage.
Natalie and Brett, in their respect and love for each other, wish to unite in the bond of marriage and to dedicate themselves to each other's happiness as husband and wife.
Today, their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined as one.

RECOGNITION & REMEMBRANCE Reverend

On behalf of Natalie and Brett, thank you for joining them today.
They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day.
Natalie and Brett will long remember this time of celebration,
and whether your trip here was local or you traveled a long distance,
they are thankful that all of you, their family and friends, are here to share in their happiness.

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today.
And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit
to share in the happiness and joy of this moment… the invocation of their names brings fond and cherished memories of a time past, yet ever present in our minds…and ever cherished in our hearts…

Especially remembered are Natalie's grandparents, Margery & Darcy, Edward & Grace, and Brett's grandparents, Ruby & Rose and Shirley.

We will always remember them and we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit.
The memories of these beautiful people live on in our hearts today and always.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT/THANKS TO PARENTS Reverend

As Natalie and Brett come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and thank their Parents for the endless love and support that they have given them throughout the years, and for all they have done in bringing them to this special moment. Your unconditional gifts of love have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you, from the bottom of their hearts. Without you, this day would not be possible.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Natalie & Brett have chosen to stand under a Chuppah for their wedding ceremony as a tribute not only to Brett's Jewish heritage, but because of the symbolism and significance of what it represents. The Chuppah is a canopy representing the home that the couple is building together. The open sides symbolize that their home is always open to everyone in their lives and that anyone visiting there will be warmly welcomed.

Natalie & Brett, marriage is the supreme sharing,
and challenging adventure in the most intimate of human relationships.
It is the joyful uniting of two people whose affection and understanding have become a deep and enduring love. Those who take these vows have their lives blended together as one.

Today you are agreeing to share life's deepest and richest experiences. You are adding to your life not only the affection of each other, but also the companionship and blessing of mutual respect.
When you enter into marriage, you enter into one of life's most important relationships.
It is a gift, given to bring comfort when there is sorrow, peace when there is restlessness, laughter when there is unhappiness, and love when it is shared.

But, no ceremony can create a marriage.
Only you can do that through love, patience, dedication and perseverance; through talking and listening, understanding and helping, supporting and believing in each other.
Through learning to forgive, learning to respect differences, and learning what's truly important while letting go of the rest. What this ceremony can do is to witness and affirm the choice you have made to begin a new life today as husband and wife.

READING #1 Reverend

Natalie and Brett have asked Natalie's Aunt Frani to join us to and share two readings with us.

Apache Wedding Blessing

Now you will feel no storms, for each of you will be shelter to the other. Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be warmth to the other. Now there is no loneliness, for each of you is companion to the other.

You are two persons, but there is one life before you, and one home. Turn together to look at the road you traveled, to reach this---the hour of your happiness. And so, May happiness be your companion, May beauty surround you both in the journey ahead; And through all the years to come. Go this day to your dwelling place and enter into your days together. May your days be good and long upon the earth.

Irish Wedding Blessing
(A favorite of Mom-Mom)

May God be with you and bless you both
May you live long to see your children's children
May you be poor in misfortunes, but rich in blessings
May you know nothing but happiness your whole life through
And may you always be in love as you are today.

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Marriage is a commitment to life, the best that two people can find and bring out in each other. It offers opportunities for sharing and growth that no other relationship can equal. It understands and forgives the mistakes life is unable to avoid and encourages new experiences and growth. Marriage is a promise made in the hearts of two people that takes a lifetime to fulfill.

You will now make those promises by pledging your commitment to each other?/p>

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please look into each other's eyes as you share your vows by repeating after me.

Brett to Natalie:

Natalie, today I take you as my wife.
I promise to love and honor you,
to be honest and faithful to you.
And with the promise
that no matter what the world brings to us
I will be by your side
for all our days to come.

Natalie to Brett:

Brett, today I take you as my husband.
I promise to love and honor you,
to be honest and faithful to you.
And with the promise
that no matter what the world brings to us
I will be by your side
for all our days to come.

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

The wedding ring is a symbol of eternity. It is an outward sign of an inward and spiritual bond which unites two hearts in endless love. And now, as a token of your love and of your deep desire to be forever united in heart and soul, you'll exchange rings as a symbol of this bond and the commitment you are making to each other today.

Andrew, may I have the rings please?

Best Man hands rings to Rev.

EXCHANGE OF RINGS Reverend & Couple

A wedding ceremony is the beginning of a new future for the couple being married - representing their hopes and dreams of what is possible as they build their lives together. But it is also deeply tied to what has come before - the foundation and traditions that have made them who they are today.

Natalie and Brett will be exchanging rings that have been handed down to them from their beloved grandparents.

Brett, please repeat after me:

Natalie, I give you this ring
as a symbol of my love & devotion.
With all that I am and all that I have,
I give you my heart.
I give it to you with the promise
to love you today, tomorrow and always.

Natalie, please repeat after me:

Brett, I give you this ring
as a symbol of my love & devotion.
With all that I am and all that I have,
I give you my heart.
I give it to you with the promise
to love you today, tomorrow and always.

May these rings remind you always of the vows you have taken here today
and may these rings be blessed by the love with which they are given.

READING #2 Edward

The second reading Natalie and Brett chose to include today is called "Foot Prints in the Sand" and will be read by Natalie's step-father, Ed. This is a reading that Natalie practically knows by heart as it hung on the wall in her grandmother's house.

In deepest sleep one night I dreamed that on the beach I walked.
God was by my side each step and quietly we talked.

Then on the sky my life was flashed, the visions all serene.
Two sets of footprints in the sand were there in every scene.

But then I noticed in some scenes of suffering, pain, and strife,
just a single set of footprints at the worst times of my life.

"God... You said You'd stay by me in good times and in bad.
Why, then, did You leave me each time my life was sad?"

"My precious child," God answered.
"When your life had pain, I knew.
The single set of footprints were the times I carried you."

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

For your marriage to be successful, you must each be loyal to the other, stand firm in your defense of each other, be supportive of one another's life goals and dreams, and carry each other through life's unexpected suffering, pain and strife. It is a solemn, binding, yet challenging relationship.

The two of you are now joined in one unbroken circle.
Wherever you go, may you always return to one another in your togetherness.
May you two find in each other the love for which all souls long.
To make your marriage work will take love.
Love should be the core of your marriage; love is the reason you are here.
But it also will take trust - to know in your hearts that you want the best for each other.
It will take faith to keep your promises.
To always be willing to go forward to tomorrow, never really knowing what tomorrow will bring.
And it will take commitment - to hold true to the journey you have both pledged to share together today.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE & BREAKING OF THE GLASS Reverend

There are several reasons why it is customary for a glass to be broken at the conclusion of the wedding ceremony. Symbolically, the breaking of the glass reminds us of the fragile nature of life. Just as a broken glass can never be made completely the same again, so will your lives be forever changed by your union. To symbolize the end of one journey and the beginning of another, Brett will break the glass. It is customary for the guests to wish the new couple well with a cheer of Mazel Tov once the glass is broken.

(Reverend places covered glass on the floor.)

Natalie & Brett, today you have promised each other your undying love and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other. Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, it is my joy and pleasure to declare that you are now husband and wife.

Brett breaks the glass. Everyone: Mazel Tov.

Brett, you may kiss your bride.

Flowers are handed back to Natalie.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Family and friends, the ceremony is over so let the celebration begin! But first, it is my honor and privilege to introduce to you for the first time as husband and wife!

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music / Piano

Music: Signed Sealed Delivered by Stevie Wonder

Bride & Groom exit, followed by Bridal party:

  1. Andrew & Jessica
  2. Jon & Nicole
  3. Jordan & Kristen
  4. Dov & Erinn
  5. Mike & Sarah
  6. Ryan & Mallory
  7. Jared & Beth
  8. Jason & Kelly
  9. Matt
  10. Adam
  11. Noah

Parents/Family follow, then Rev. and Guests.

THE MARRIAGE CEREMONY OF
NATASHA
&
MICHAEL

Holly Hedge Estate
6987 Upper York Road, New Hope, PA
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / DJ

Music played while guests are seated.

PROCESSIONAL Music / DJ

The Reverend, Groom, Best Man (Phil) and Groomsmen come out side door of barn and proceed to patio for start of ceremony. Groomsmen enter in this order:

  1. Adam
  2. Mike
  3. Luke

Groom's father (Robert) enters with his wife (Kay); they proceed to their seats in front row/right side.

Groom's mother (Cindy) enters with her husband (Tom); they proceed to their seats in front row/right side.

Bride's mother (Margarita) enters with her son/bride's brother (Hermy); they proceed to their sears in front row/left side.

Ring-bearer (Dante) enters and proceeds to line-up where he'll stand next to Luke (Dante will be furthest from Groom).

The Bridesmaids enter take their places in the line-up.

  1. Natalie
  2. Liz
  3. Charissa (furthest from Bride)

The Maid of Honor (Joanna) enters and takes her place in line-up.

Music stops for Question Round

Bridesmaids will walk-in to a song. Once everyone is in the front the music will stop and we will begin the question round.

Natalie will start off with a bit of background and intro.

Question 1 will be asked by Natalie:

Name 3 of out 4 of Natasha's favorites from this list:

  • Holiday
  • Dessert
  • Activity
  • Something about Mike
  • Dessert

Question 2 will be asked by Joanna:

Will have a sheet with various lipsticks and the groom will need to guess which one belongs to Natasha.

Question 3 will be asked by Liz:

Will ask Mike to say I love you in Russian.

Question 4 will be asked by Charissa:

Will challenge Mike (groomsmen can help!) to do a Macarena.

Music changes

Reverend: Please stand.

Bride enters with her step-father (Efren). They proceed to front row and Reverend and Mike step forward to greet them.

Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this Bride, Natasha, to be married to this Groom, Michael?

Efren responds: “Her mother and I do.”

Dad lifts Natasha's veil then kisses her and shakes Mike's hand before taking his seat in front row.

Flowers handed to Joanna.

Couple is brought together and the ceremony begins.

WELCOME Reverend

Welcome! Good evening, family and friends.
We have come here today to celebrate the marriage of Natasha and Michael.
Today, Natasha and Michael demonstrate their devotion to each other by dedicating themselves to a life together. And they show their respect for each other by setting forth to honor their vows.
Today, their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined as one.

Please be seated.

THANKS TO FAMILY & FRIENDS / REMEMBRANCE Reverend

Natasha and Michael, today you are surrounded by your family and friends,
all of whom have gathered to witness and share in the joy of this occasion.
In marriage, we give ourselves freely and generously into the hands of the one we love, and in doing so each of us receives the love and trust of the other as our most precious gift.
But even as that gift is shared by two people who are in love, it also touches the friends and family members who in various ways support and contribute to the relationship.
Together each of you has played some part in bringing Natasha & Mike to this moment.
This is why gathering as a community is such an important part of a wedding ceremony.
In this special time of celebration that Natasha & Mike will long remember,
they are thankful that you are all here to share in their joy.

As Natasha and Michael come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and thank their parents & families for the endless love and support that they have given them throughout their years and for all that they have done in bringing them to this incredible moment.

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today. And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment.

Especially remembered are Natasha's grandmother, Alexandra and grandfather, Alexander, and Mike's Uncle Fred.

We will always remember all of them and we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit. The memories of these beautiful people live on in our hearts today and always.

ACKNOWLEDGE DANTE Reverend

Often marriage is viewed as the coming together of only two persons.
In reality, however, marriage is much broader. As we give thanks for the love that brings Natasha and Michael together, so too we recognize the merging of families taking place, and the additional love and responsibility family and friends bring to this relationship.

For Natasha and Michael, their marriage also includes one other very special persona. As part of the family nature of their marriage, they would like recognize and renew their commitment to Mike's son, Dante, and acknowledge the very important role he plays in this relationship we celebrate today.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Natasha and Michael, you both know you have developed a deep love and respect for each other and have already proven this is true over the past few years of your relationship.
But it never hurts to be reminded of why two people fell in love in the first place
and continue to fall in love with each other again and again.
As you walk through life together, remember that you are unique and different from one another.
Give your love openly and honestly.
Do not try to change each other, it is your differences that brought you together.

Always accept and respect what the other has to say. Even if you do not agree, take time to enjoy each day. And remember that each day is a new beginning.
In marriage, walk the path together, side by side, whenever possible.
Hold each other when it is cold, and if the air becomes too close, make a little space so each can breathe.
When the path is narrow, pick one to go first. Be willing to follow and never be afraid to lead.
Trust your partner and trust yourself ”“ for a marriage is a journey that leads to greater love.
This real love says you are stronger together than when you are apart.

But, no ceremony can create a marriage.
Only you can do that through love, patience, dedication and perseverance; through talking and listening, understanding and helping, supporting and believing in each other.
Through learning to forgive, learning to respect differences,
and learning what's truly important while letting go of the rest.
What this ceremony can do is to witness and affirm the choice you have made
to begin a new life today as husband and wife.

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Marriage is a commitment to life, the best that two people can find and bring out in each other. It offers opportunities for sharing and growth that no other relationship can equal. It understands and forgives the mistakes life is unable to avoid and encourages new experiences and growth. Marriage is a promise made in the hearts of two people that takes a lifetime to fulfill.

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

You will now make that promise by pledging your commitment to one another by repeating your vows after me.

Mike to Natasha:

Natasha, today I take you to be my wife,
to have and to hold,
for better or for worse,
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish;
from this day forward
all the days of our lives.

Natasha to Mike:

Michael, today I take you to be my husband,
to have and to hold,
for better or for worse,
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish;
from this day forward
all the days of our lives.

READING Amanda

Natasha & Mike have invited his sister, Amanda, to share the following reading with us called The One written by C. J Barclay.

The One

When the one whose hand you're holding
Is the one who holds your heart,
When the one whose eyes you gaze into
Gives your hopes and dreams their start,
When the one you think of first and last
Is the one who holds you tight
And the things you plan together
Make the whole world seem just right,
When the one whom you believe in
Puts their faith and trust in you,
You've found the one and only love
You'll share your whole life through.

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

Phil, may I have the rings please?

Best Man hands rings to Rev.

The wedding ring is a symbol of eternity. It is an outward sign of an inward and spiritual bond which unites two hearts in endless love. And now, as a token of your love and of your deep desire to be forever united in heart and soul, you'll exchange rings as a symbol of this bond and the commitment you are making to each other today.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Mike, please repeat after me:

Natasha, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love
and my commitment to share
my life's journey with you.
I give you this ring,
with my pledge to love you
all the days of my life.

Natasha, please repeat after me:

Michael I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love
and my commitment to share
my life's journey with you.
I give you this ring,
with my pledge to love you
all the days of my life.

May these rings forever be a symbol of the unbroken circle of love. May these rings remind you always of the vows you have taken here today. As often as either of you looks upon these rings, may you be reminded of this moment and the love you have promised.

HANDFASTING Reverend & Couple

In ancient times, the commitment of marriage was signified by binding the hands together.
This Celtic tradition is believed to be the origin of the term “tying the knot.” Natasha & Mike have chosen to symbolize the joining of their lives by incorporating this ancient hand-fasting ritual into their marriage ceremony today. This cord, which will entwine the hands of Natasha & Mike, is symbolic of the love that unites and binds their hearts and spirits.

Natasha joins her left hand with Mike's right hand and her right hand with his left hand. Rev. ties cord loosely around couple's hands.

These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever.
These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future.
These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.
These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind.
These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes;
tears of sorrow, and tears of joy.
These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children.
These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one.
These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.
And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged,
will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

Natasha & Mike, before I declare you husband and wife, I want to wish you both much love and happiness as you begin your new journey together.

May you always need one another, not to fill an emptiness, but to help each other know your fullness.
May you want one another, but not out of lack.
May you embrace one another, but not encircle one another.
May you succeed in all important ways with each other, and not fail in the little graces.
May you have happiness, in making one another happy.
And, may you have love, in loving one another.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Natasha & Mike, may the truth of your words before this gathering of family and friends be valid for the rest of your lives.
By your words today in this ceremony you have promised each other your undying love.
By the act of joining hands and exchanging rings, you take to yourself the relation of husband and wife. And, because Mike survived the 4 questions and gave acceptable answers, it is truly my joy and pleasure to pronounce you husband and wife.

Mike, you may kiss your beautiful bride.

(Kiss and applause)

Flowers handed to Natasha.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is over, the celebration can begin.
But first, it is my honor and privilege to present to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music / DJ

Couple exits down aisle followed by bridal party:

  1. Phil & Joanna
  2. Adam & Natalie
  3. Mike & Liz
  4. Luke & Charissa
  5. Dante

Parents/Family follow, then Reverend and guests.

THE MARRIAGE OF
LYNN
&
GAVIN

Kirkpatrick Chapel
85 Somerset Street, New Brunswick, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Piano, Karina Bruk

Music played while guests are being seated.

The Reverend, Groom (Gavin), and Best Man (Ramzan) enter from the side entrance of the chapel and take place at front for the start of the processional.

PROCESSIONAL Piano, Karina Bruk

Groom's Grandmother /Coin Sponsor (Fatima) enters and proceeds to front row, right side.

Groom's Father/Cord Sponsor and Step-Mother (Rasheed & Savo), proceed to front row, right side.

Groom's step- brother (Rajiv) and step-sister (Nandita), proceed to 2nd row, right side.

Groom's Parents (Nazmoon & Baksh) proceed to front row, right side.

Bride's Uncle and Aunt, (Louie and Rita), proceed to the front row, left side.

Bride's God Parents / Veil Sponsors, Uncle and Aunt (Eddie & Zennie) proceed to front row, left side

Bride's Aunts/Coin and Cord Sponsors (Menchu and Nell), proceed to the 2nd row, left side

Bride's Aunt / Reader (Auring) will proceed to the 2nd row, left side

Music changes for Bridesmaids and Groomsmen's entrance

Sheila and Meelin enter and take place in line up, Sheila to the far left, Meelin the far right

Christine and Eddie enter and take place in line up, Christine to the left, Eddie to the right

Kamille and Omar enter and take place in line up, Kamille to the left, Omar to the right

Anika and Michael Ganie enter and take place in line up, Anika to the left, Michael to the right

Chrissy and Sean enter and take place in line up, Chrissy to the left, Sean to the right

Crista and Mike Browne enter and take place in line up, Crista to the left, Mike to the right

Tash and Jeet enter and take place in line up, Tash to the left, Jeet to the right

Mae and Lee enter and take place in line up, Mae to the left, Lee to the right

Maid of Honor (Tina) enters and takes place in line up, Tina to the left

Ring Bearers (Amani and Kieran) enter together and proceeds to lineup, both to the left, 2nd row (Uncle Muhammed and Auntie Zally seated in 2nd row, to receive children)

Coin Bearer (Aiden) and Flower Girl (Maya) enter together and proceeds to lineup, both to the left, 2nd row (Uncle Muhammed and Auntie Zally seated in 2nd row, to receive children)

Reverend: Please stand.

Music changes for Bride's entrance

Bride enters with her Parents (Gary & Fortune); they proceed to front row.

Reverend and Groom greet them at front row for passing of the Bride.

Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this Bride Lynn to be married to this Groom Gavin?

Bride's Father responds: “Her Mother and I do.”

Father kisses Lynn and shakes Gavin's hand.

Mother kisses Lynn then Gavin.

Bride's parents take seats in front row/left side.

Flowers are handed to Tina

Couple is brought together for the start of ceremony.

GREETING & OPENING PRAYER Reverend

Friends and family, I welcome you all here today as we have come together in the presence of God to witness the joining of Lynn & Abdul in Holy Matrimony. Let us bow our heads and pray.

Dear God, thank you for this joyous day.
Thank you for Your Light that has entered Lynn and Abdul's life.
Thank you for all the miracles and blessings.
Please bless this union.
Help Lynn and Abdul find the perfect place in this world for their love to flourish.
Let the radiant light of their love shine on all those around them.
May all their future creations be blessed.
God, bless them with the inner gifts of trust, compassion, forgiveness and truth
that they may live and grow together in love and peace.
Amen.

Please be seated.

REMEMBRANCE Reverend

As we celebrate this wedding today, Lynn & Abdul would like to honor the memory of those family and friends that could not be with them today.

Especially remembered are:
Lynn's Grandmothers, Arsenia and Leona; along with her Grandfathers, Fidel rigino and Gabriel.
Also remembered are Abdul's Grandmother, Mimoon and his Grandfathers, Abdul and Shai.

Although they are not physically present today, let us take a moment of silence to remember them and all of our departed loved ones whose beautiful memories are with us in spirit.

This is a special time of celebration that Lynn and Abdul will long remember,
and they are thankful you, their family and friends, are here to share their joy.

PARENTAL HONORING Reverend

Lynn and Abdul would like to acknowledge their parents on this occasion,
Fortunata and Gary, Nazmoon and Baksh, Rasheed and Savo.
Lynn and Abdul offer their profound gratitude to their parents
for all the love and care they showed in raising them.
The unconditional gifts of love and support that you have continually offered
have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you, from the bottom of their hearts,
for guiding them to this celebration of love here today.
Without you, this day would not be possible.

INVOCATION Reverend

Lynn and Abdul, today is one of the happiest days of your lives.
A marriage is a promise to be kind and understanding, to be thoughtful, considerate, and to share one life together. This love you share will grow with caring, kindness, compassion, and tenderness.
Your love for one another will bond you body, spirit, and soul.

Marriage begins a life of giving and sharing, nurturing and support. So allow each other the freedom to change and grow as individuals, while developing your mutual spirit as time goes on.

Happiness in marriage is not something that just happens.
A good marriage must be created.
Marriage is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives.
It is standing together facing the world.
It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family.

It is having the capacity to forgive and forget — and respect one another.
It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow.
It is finding room for the things of the spirit.
It is a common search for the good and the beautiful.

Marriage is establishing a relationship, in which the independence is equal,
the dependence is mutual, and the obligation is reciprocal.
It is not only marrying the right partner, it is being the right partner.

READING Aunt Auring

Lynn and Abdul have invited Primary Sponsor and God Parent, Lynn's Aunt Auring,
to give a reading, which is taken from First Corinthians, Chapter 13.

Be ambitious for the higher gifts and I am going to show you a way that is better then any of them.
If I have all the eloquence of men or of angels,
but speak without love, I am but a sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.

And though I have the gift of prophecy, understanding all mysteries and all knowledge.
And though I have faith in all its fullness, as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.
If I give away all that I possess, piece by piece, and even if I give my body to burn, but don't have love, it profits me nothing.

Love is patient and kind; it is not envious or boastful; it is not arrogant, rude or proud.
Love is not self-seeking; it is not easily angered;
it does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful.
Love takes no pleasure in other people's sins, but delights in the truth.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. Love never ends.

As for prophecies, they will pass away, as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. But know faith, hope and love remain, and of these three, the greatest is love.

CANDLE LIGHTING CEREMONY Reverend & Sponsors

At this time, I would like to invite the “candle sponsors”, Lynn and Abdul's Mothers, Fortunata and Nazmoon to join us. The candle sponsors will each light a taper candle. The flame from the two candles represents two lives, two families and two spirits who will be joined together.

Pause for lighting of taper candles. Mothers return to their seats.

I will now ask each of you to take your individual candle and together light the center unity candle.
This symbolizes the strength and beauty you will bring to one another as husband and wife.

Pause for lighting of center unity candle.

Today you have pledged yourselves to a lifetime of caring for one another. May your togetherness bring you joy and comfort, and may your uniqueness continue to challenge you to live life with courage and creativity.

COIN CEREMONY Reverend, Couple & Sponsors

At this time, I would like to invite up the “Coin Secondary Sponsors,” Lynn's Aunt Menchu and Abdul's Grandmother Fatima who will participate in a special Filipino wedding tradition.

Coin Sponsors come forward to present the Bride & Groom with coins.

There are 13 coins, also known as arras, representing wealth and prosperity for each month of the year
with an extra to spare assuring luck for the newlyweds and their future family the whole year through and beyond.

By giving and accepting the arras, Lynn & Abdul pronounce their unconditional trust and confidence in each other. The metal tinkling of the 13 coins signifies abundance and success in the couple's joint efforts. This presentation and exchange of coins symbolizes prosperity and happiness in life together.

VEIL & CORD CEREMONY Aunt Auring

Couple kneels with backs to guests. Background piano music, “I'm Kissing you” plays softly.

At this time, I would like to invite up Lynn's God Parent's, Zennie and Eddie who will participate in the “Veil Ceremony” and Gavin's Father Rasheed and Lynn's Aunt Gundelina who will participate in the “Cord Ceremony”, both special Filipino wedding traditions.

Veil Sponsors (Eddie and Zennie) come forward to drape the veil
over the Groom's shoulders and the Bride's head.

Veil Sponsors will then drape and pin the Veil (long white tulle)
on the Groom's shoulder and veil over the Bride's head.

Draping the Veil in this way symbolizes two people clothed as one and the couple's promise to take care of each other from this day forward.

Cord Sponsors (Rasheed & Nell: nickname for Gundelina) come forward and loosely place the cord around the neck-shoulder area of the Couple.

And, lastly, the Cord is shaped as the figure 8. By placing it over the veil, it symbolizes the infinite bond of marriage. This looping of the Cord on the Couple represents unity and infinity - a love together, forever.

Sponsors then take the Veil and the Cord off the Couple and take their seats.

THE LORD'S PRAYER Everyone

Before Lynn & Abdul exchange their vows, let us please stand and take this moment to remember the words that our Heavenly Father gave us:

Our Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Reverend: For thine are the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, now and forever.

Everyone: Amen.

Reverend: Please be seated.

At this time, I'd like to introduce one of the Groomsman, Michael, who will honor the couple by singing a special song that Lynn and Gavin have dedicated to each other and you, their family and friends.

MUSIC Pianist and Michael

Music begins for I'll Be There.

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Lynn and Abdul, in a moment you will declare your intentions to one another and exchange your vows.
You can never really know what hills and valleys will stretch out in front of you in the years ahead.
There's only the future, unlimited and unknowable and the promise to make the journey together.

DECLARATION OF INTENT Reverend & Couple

Lynn & Abdul, will you please join hands and look into one another's eyes,
as you now declare your intentions and pledge your love to one another.

Abdul, do you take Lynn,
to be your lawfully wedded wife;
to be a partner in marriage and in life;
to love her and honor her;
to be honest and faithful to her;
and to stand by her all the days of your life?

Response: I do.

Lynn, do you take Abdul,
to be your lawfully wedded husband;
to be a partner in marriage and in life;
to love him and honor him;
to be honest and faithful to him;
and to stand by him all the days of your life?

Response: I do.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

May I have the rings please?

(Rings handed to Minister by Best Man)

It is believed that the circle was a symbol of eternity, completeness, and peace; a sign that life, happiness, and love have no beginning or end. As the circle of these rings knows no end, may your love for each other also be endless.

Abdul, please repeat after me:

I, Abdul, take thee, Lynn,
for my lawful wedded wife,
to have and to hold,
from this day forward,
for better, for worse,
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health
as long as we both shall live.

Lynn, repeat after me:

I, Lynn, take thee, Abdul,
for my lawful wedded husband,
to have and to hold, from this day forward,
for better, for worse,
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health
as long as we both shall live.

NUPTIAL BLESSING Reverend

Abdul and Lynn, before I declare you husband and wife, I want to wish you both much love and happiness as you begin your new journey together. May the Peace that passes all understanding be yours now and forevermore.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Lynn and Abdul, we have witnessed today the joining of your two lives in marriage. You have exchanged your vows and given and received rings.
Therefore, by the power vested in me, I now pronounce you husband and wife.

Gavin, you may kiss your Bride.

(Kiss and applause)

Flowers handed back to Lynn.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is now over. Guests are invited to the Grand Marquis where the couple will greet you. But now, it gives me great pleasure to introduce to you, for the very first time in their new relationship as husband and wife.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Piano, Karina Bruk

Music played while Bridal Party exits.

Couple exits towards front row, turn and kiss again, and then exits down aisle.

Bridal Party follows out next.

Sponsors exit, followed by Parents, Reverend and then Guests.

THE WEDDING CEREMONY OF
MADELEINE
&
ROBERT

The Palace
333 Davidson Avenue, Somerset, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / DJ

Music played while guests are seated.

PROCESSIONAL Music / DJ

Reverend, Robert, Best Man (Dan) enter and take places in line-up.

Groom's father (Bob) enters with Edie; they proceed to their seats in the front row/right side.

Groom's mother (Deborah) enters with Donald.

Bride's mother (Ava) enters with Charles; they proceed to their seats in the front row/left side.

Music changes for Bridesmaids/Groomsmen entrance.

Bridesmaids proceed down stairway and meet respective Groomsman at bottom of stairs:

  1. Cheryl & Erik (furthest from Bride & Groom)
  2. Jill & Darren
  3. Kim & Tommy
  4. Joy & Nick

Matron-of-Honor (Susan) enters and proceeds to line-up.

Music changes for Bride's entrance.

Reverend: Please rise.

Bride enters with her father (Martin); they proceed toward line-up. When they reach the front row, the Reverend & Robert greet them for the passing of the Bride. Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this Bride, Madeleine, to be married to this Groom, Robert?

Dad responds “I do” kisses Bride and shakes Robert's hand. He takes his seat in front row/left side.

Flowers handed to Susan and couple is brought together for the start of ceremony.

GREETING / WELCOME Reverend

Good evening and welcome!
We gather here this evening to witness and celebrate an act of deep love.
Madeleine & Robert, in their devotion, respect, and love for each other, come before us to be united in marriage, and to dedicate themselves to each other's happiness and well-being as husband and wife.

OPENING PRAYER Reverend

Let us pray.

Dear God, Love has been your richest and greatest gift to the world.
Love between two people which matures into marriage is one of the most beautiful types of love. Today we celebrate that love.
We ask you to bless this wedding ceremony; to protect and guide Madeleine & Robert in their marriage. And whatever changes time may bring, let today's wedding ceremony always remain as a treasured memory and a guide to life for Madeleine & Robert.

Amen.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION & REMEMBRANCE Reverend

Madeleine & Robert are especially grateful to all of you for attending their wedding.
They will long remember this time of celebration, and whether your trip here was local or you traveled a long distance, they are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day.
You are their parents, family and friends and have touched their lives in so many ways.
You're all a very special part of their lives and you've been chosen to share in their wedding day because you mean so much to them.

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today.
And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment.

We especially remember Madeleine & Robert's grandparents and Robert's Uncle Kenny.

Though they are absent physically, we invoke their loving presence through our thought and prayers and will always remember all of them.
The memories of these beautiful people live on in our hearts today and always and we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Madeleine & Robert, the words I want to share with you, have already been proven true many times during the past 10+ years you've known each other and the 4+ you've been together. But it never hurts to be reminded of why two people fell in love in the first place and continue to fall in love with each other again and again.

The relationship you're entering into today as a wedded couple is truly one of life's most important relationships.
It is a gift, given to bring comfort when there is sorrow, peace when there is restlessness, laughter when there is unhappiness, and love when it is shared.
Real love goes far beyond the feelings of romance and bliss.
It is caring more about the well-being and happiness of each other, rather than your own needs and desires. Love makes burdens lighter because you divide them.
It makes joys more intense because you share them. It makes you stronger so you can become involved with life in ways you dare not risk alone.
A successful marriage is not something that just happens. It takes work and it takes effort. Most importantly, it takes commitment from both of you. A good marriage must be created.

DECLARATION OF INTENT Reverend & Couple

No ceremony can create your marriage.
Only you can do that-through love, patience, dedication, perseverance;
through talking and listening and trying to understand;
through helping and supporting and believing in each other;
through learning to forgive, learning to respect and appreciate your differences,
and learning to make the important things matter and to let go of the rest.
What this ceremony can do is to witness and affirm the choice you have made to begin a new life today as husband and wife. You come here today to pledge your love for one another and formally acknowledge that which your hearts already know…
that your lives are meant to be shared as one,
that you are stronger together than you are apart, and that, for all the days yet to come,
you wish to share together all life's joys and challenges, committed one to the other....

Please join hands as you now declare your intentions to one another.

Have you come here freely and without reservation to give yourselves to each other in marriage?

We Have

Will you love and honor each other as husband and wife for all your days yet to come?

We Will

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Robert and Madeleine, as the two of you come into marriage uniting as husband and wife, and as you this day affirm your faith and love for one another in the presence of family and friends, I would ask that you always remember to cherish each other as special and unique individuals, and that you respect the thoughts, ideas and suggestions of one another.

A lifetime commitment is the promise made and kept between two people
with intentions of trusting, supporting and loving each other.
You will now make those promises by pledging your commitment to each other?

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please look into each other's eyes.

Robert to Madeleine:

Robert, do you give yourself to Madeleine in marriage?
Do you promise to encourage and inspire her,
to laugh with her, and to comfort her in times of sorrow and struggle?
Do you promise to love her in good times and in bad, when life seems easy and when it seems hard.
Do you promise to cherish her and to always hold her in the highest regard? Do you promise these things to Madeleine today and all the days of your life?

Robert responds: “I do”

Madeleine to Robert:

Madeleine, do you give yourself to Robert in marriage?
Do you promise to encourage and inspire him,
to laugh with him, and to comfort him in times of sorrow and struggle?
Do you promise to love him in good times and in bad when life seems easy and when it seems hard.
Do you promise to cherish him and to always hold him in the highest regard?
Do you promise these things to Robert today and all the days of your life?

Madeleine responds: “I do”

READING Bryan

I'd like to invite Robert's cousin, Bryan, to join us to read a passage from Romans 12:1-2, 9-18.

Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit and serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer and extend hospitality to strangers.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be wiser than you are. Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all. If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

It is believed that the circle was a symbol of eternity, completeness, holiness and peace; a sign that life, happiness, and love have no beginning or end. As the circle of these rings knows no end, may your love for each other also be endless. Without beginning or end or point of weakness, the circle is a reminder of the eternal quality of love. Your wedding rings are an outward sign of an inward love that unites your hearts. When you look at them, be reminded of the excitement of this day and the love that you feel in this moment.

Dan, may I have the rings please?

Best Man hands rings to Rev.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please look into each other's eyes as you share your vows by repeating after me:

Robert to Madeleine:

Madeleine, with this ring,
I pledge my love and faithfulness to you,
today, tomorrow and always

Madeleine to Robert:

Robert, with this ring,
I pledge my love and faithfulness to you, today, tomorrow and always

FISHERMAN'S KNOT Reverend & Couple

At this time, if the Bride & Groom's mothers, Ava & Deborah, would bring them the cords for a very unique wedding tradition known as the fisherman's knot.

Madeleine & Robert, these two lengths of cord represent your separate families and your individual lives before today. The fisherman's knot, also called the “true lovers knot”, is one of the simplest and strongest knots to tie; it will not break, and will only become stronger when under pressure.

I ask that you each take one piece, and that together you bind them in a true lovers' knot. Tying this knot signifies that your two families and your two lives are now and forever bound together as one.

(Begin tying the knot.)

As you intertwine your pieces, you are joining your two lives into one, representing the present.
The finished knot symbolizes your future, and how your love and marriage will continue to be strong despite any trials life may throw your way.

(Pull the rope together.)

And so the binding is made. Let this knot be a reminder of the rewards of your working together to have a happy marriage and life.
This knot is symbolic of the fact that you both share the same intentions concerning this relationship, that you will hold each other's heart tight, and form a strong bond from here to forever.
Let this knot be a symbol of the strength of your love for each other.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

The two of you are now joined body, heart and soul.
Wherever you go, may you always return to one another in your togetherness.
May you two find in each other the love for which all souls long.
May you grow in understanding and in compassion. And, may your home be such a place of sanctuary that all who visit will find there a friend.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Madeleine & Robert, you have shared this moment and these promises with your family and friends, as a symbol of deeply loving each other. You've made an everlasting commitment and have promised to love, honor, comfort and cherish each other, so long as you both shall live.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, I now pronounce you husband and wife.

Robert, you may kiss your beautiful bride.

(Kiss and applause) Flowers handed to Madeleine.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is over, the celebration can begin. But first it is my privilege and pleasure to introduce to you, in their new relationship as husband and wife, Mr. & Mrs. Robert.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music / DJ

Robert & Madeleine exit, followed by Bridal Party:

  1. Susan & Dan
  2. Joy & Nick
  3. Kim & Tommy
  4. Jill & Darren
  5. Cheryl & Erik

Parents/Family follow behind, then Reverend and Guests.

THE MARRIAGE CEREMONY OF
KELLY
&
NIKOS

Seasons
644 Pascack Road, Washington Township, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music

Music played while guests are seated.

PROCESSIONAL Music

The Reverend enters and takes his place at front of room.

Groom enters with his parents, Markos & Afroditi; he escorts them to their seats in front row/right side. Nikos then joins Rev. in line-up.

Bridesmaids and Groomsmen enter in this order and take their places in the line-up:

  1. Ash & Jimmy (furthest from Bride & Groom)
  2. Jennifer W. & Addiel
  3. Megan & Mark
  4. Jen E. & Nick (Best Man)

Music changes.

Reverend: Please stand.

Bride enters, escorted by her parents (Don & Maryann); they proceed to front row where Reverend and Groom greet them.

Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this bride, Kelly, to be married to this groom, Nikos?

Don & Maryann reply “We do”. They kiss/hug Kelly & Nikos before taking their seats in the front row/left side.

Flowers handed to Jen E. and couple is brought together for start of ceremony.

GREETING Reverend

Good morning. We gather here today to witness and celebrate an act of deep love.
Kelly and Nikos, in their devotion, respect, and love for each other wish to unite in the bond of marriage, and to dedicate themselves to each other's happiness and well-being as life mates and partners. On behalf of them, I welcome you all.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION OF FRIENDS/FAMILIES/PARENTS Reverend

On behalf of Kelly and Nikos, thank you for joining them today.
They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day. Kelly and Nikos will long remember this time of celebration, and whether your trip here was local or you traveled a long distance, they are thankful that all of you, their family and friends, are here to share in their happiness.
By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other.
And you support their decision to commit themselves to one another.

Kelly and Nikos would especially like to recognize their families and parents on this occasion.
And offer their profound gratitude for the unconditional gifts of love and support that they have continually offered. You have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you, from the bottom of their hearts.

REMEMBRANCE Reverend

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today. And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment… the invocation of their names brings fond and cherished memories of a time past, yet ever present in our minds…and ever cherished in their hearts…

We will always remember all of them and we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit. The memories of these beautiful people live on in our hearts today and always.

UNITY CANDLE CEREMONY Reverend, Couple & Parents

Music in background.

I would now like to invite the Bride & Groom's Parents - Don & Maryann and Markos & Afroditi - to join us to light the taper candles for the unity candle ceremony.

(Parents come forward)

Kelly and Nikos, the two individual taper candles that your parents are now lighting symbolize your individual spirits, memories, hopes, and dreams - a single light that shines from within each of you.

(Parents light taper candles and return to their seats)

I will now ask each of you to take your individual candle and together light the center unity candle.
This symbolizes the strength and beauty you will bring to one another as husband and wife.

(Pause for lighting of center candle by Couple)

The center candle represents a symbol of your unity, the one radiant light of eternity that shines from within you, the light that you share with each other, and your family, friends, and the world. It is the strength and beauty you will bring to one another, as husband and wife, as one in flesh, as one in spirit.

May the brightness of this candle you have lit together shine throughout your lives, giving you courage and reassurance in the darkness. May its warmth give you shelter from the cold. And may its energy fill your spirits with strength and joy.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Kelly & Nikos, marriage is the beginning of a new life, a chance at fulfilling long held dreams, and an opportunity for great personal and spiritual growth. Marriage endures through the ages of trends and fads. It thrives, and continues to live as a promise of a beautiful dream come true.
As long as individuals are drawn together, marriage will be a natural unfolding of that relationship.

Feelings come alive at a wedding.
Feelings of great happiness. Some sadness.
Apprehension. And sometimes pure relief!
There is an acute awareness that something special,
something that goes to the very heart of life, is about to happen.
Something is gone forever, and something is born, brand new and tender.
Something to be nurtured and cared for, protected and cherished,
challenged and strengthened - your never before created marriage.

Each of you brings gifts to the other today.
Gifts of hope and laughter, focus and seriousness of purpose.
Sensitivity and recognition of the beautiful and the profound.
Since childhood, you have searched for and dreamed about that special someone
who would embody and express the gifts you now stand ready to give and to receive.

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Kelly & Nikos, you are about to make promises to one another.
These vows are words representing your intentions.
You'll find that as you live by these vows over the years,
investing your time and love, and your commitment to one another,
the happy times of your life will be twice as joyous
because there will be someone to share those joys with.

Each union that is created out of the right intentions
gives rise to the ability to experience a fuller and richer life, not only for the two in the union but for those surrounding them, their family and friends.
For two people coming together in alignment with their beliefs,
willing to share and create a common future;
their union is not only a ceremony but an ongoing commitment.

STEFANA Reverend, Couple & Best Man

Marriage is a bringing together.
It is a bringing together of two people, of two families, and very often two cultures.
Kelly and Nikos have chosen to honor their different cultures by including the Greek Stefana ceremony and the Jewish Breaking of the Glass at the end of the ceremony.

In a traditional Greek wedding ceremony, the bride and groom are crowned with Stefana.
Stefana are duel crowns linked together with a single length of ribbon,
symbolizing the joining of two souls and the creation of a new household.
It is a symbol of combining two people as one.
After the wedding, the Stefana are set aside in a safe place, representing the couple's commitment.
Stefana are intended to be kept for life, forming eternal memories for the bride and the groom.

Nick places the crowns on Bride & Groom.

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please join hands as you share your wedding vows with each other.

Nikos, do you take Kelly, to be your wife, to be your partner in marriage and in life; to love her and honor her; to be honest and faithful to her; and to stand by Kelly all the days of your life?

Nikos responds: I do.

Kelly, do you take Nikos, to be your husband, to be your partner in marriage and in life; to love him and honor him; to be honest and faithful to him; and to stand by Nikos all the days of your life?

Kelly responds: I do.

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

Kelly and Nikos, new experiences lie before you with opportunities to grow deeper in love with each other. As you walk hand in hand into the future, cherish each moment as a gift —
a gift, given to strengthen the bond between you.
May the years bring you happiness and contentment, and may you enter each other's sorrow by empathy; into each other's joy with gladness; into each other's hope with faith and trust;
and into each other's lives with enthusiasm and embracing.
May your life together be full of kindness and understanding, thoughtfulness and rejoicing.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

And so we come to the presentation of rings by which you symbolize and bind your love.
The circle has long been a symbol of eternal love.
Without beginning or end or point of weakness, the circle is a reminder of the eternal quality of love.
Let the seamless circle of these rings become the symbol of your love and faithfulness.
Your wedding rings say you have chosen to be bonded and
will always reflect the union you are now creating.

[Rings will be in heart on table.]

Nikos, please repeat after me:

Kelly, I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you,
today, tomorrow, and always.

Kelly, please repeat after me:

Nikos, I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you,
today, tomorrow, and always.

CEREMONIAL WALK Reverend, Couple & Best Man

Now that the bride and groom have been adorned with the wedding crowns, and have exchanged their vows and rings, they will walk around the altar one time. This ceremonial walk is an important tradition in a Greek wedding, as it symbolizes the first steps of life as a married couple.

Crowns removed by Nick.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

Kelly & Nikos, before I declare you husband and wife,
I want to wish you both much love and happiness as you begin your new journey together.
Remember to keep lots of laughter in your life and love will never be far behind.

May all that you are, always be in love.
May all that is love, always be in you.
May your love be as beautiful on each day you share,
as it is on this day of celebration.
And may each day you share be as precious to you
as the day you first fell in love.
May you always see and encourage the best in each other.
May the challenges life brings your way
make your marriage even stronger,
and may you always be each other's best friend and greatest love

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE & BREAKING OF THE GLASS Reverend

For the bride and groom in a traditional Jewish wedding,
the breaking of the glass symbolizes the breaking down of barriers
between people of different cultures and faiths.
It also reminds us, that love, like glass, is fragile and must be protected.
It is a “rite of passage” to declare the end of one era and the beginning of another,
as the joining of the bride and groom and their families become one.
This broken glass is kept as a keepsake, symbolizing the fragility of the relationship
and serving as a reminder that the relationship must be treated with special care.
In a moment, Nikos will break the glass signifying the end of the ceremony
and the time for celebration.

(Reverend places covered glass on the floor.)

Kelly & Nikos, by your words today in this ceremony you have promised each other your undying love
and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, and by virtue of the authority vested in me, it is my joy and pleasure to declare you husband and wife.

Nikos, you may kiss your beautiful bride.

Kiss and applause.

As Nikos breaks the glass, everyone should shout: Mazel Tov,
which means congratulations and good luck.

(Nikos steps on the glass w/right foot and breaks it.)

Everyone: Mazel Tov.

Flowers handed back to Kelly.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is over, the celebration can begin.
But first, it is my honor and privilege to present to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife, Mr. and Mrs. Nikos & Kelly.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music

Couple exits down aisle followed by bridal party:

  1. Jen E. & Nick (Best Man)
  2. Megan & Mark
  3. Jennifer W. & Addiel
  4. Ash & Jimmy

Parents/Family follow, then Reverend and guests.

THE WEDDING CEREMONY OF
BEVERLY
&
MICHAEL

Rutherfurd Hall
Allamuchy, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / Acoustic Guitar

Music played while guests are seated.

PROCESSIONAL Music / Acoustic Guitar

Reverend enters and proceeds to line-up with Best Man, Charlie.

Bride's grandmother, Ruth, enters with Groom; they proceed to her seat in front row/right side; Groom returns to escort Irene.

Bride's father, Leo, enters with his wife, Valerie; he escorts Valerie to her seat in the front row/left side. Leo returns to escort Bride.

Bride's mother, Irene, enters with Groom; he escorts Irene to her seat in the front row/left side. Groom joins line-up between Rev. and Charlie.

Maid-of-Honor, Patty, enters and proceeds to line-up.

Bridesmaids, Heather and Amy, enter and proceed to line-up. Amy stands next to Patty. Heather returns to walk in with Roxy.

Ring bearer, Jason, enters and proceeds to front where he'll sit with family.

Flower girl, Roxy, will walk in with Bridesmaid, Heather; they proceed to front where Heather and Roxy will join line-up next to Amy.

Music changes for Bride's entrance and Reverend asks everyone to “Please rise”.

Bride enters with her father (Leo); they proceed to front for the passing of the Bride. Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this Bride, Beverly, to be married to this Groom, Michael?

Dad responds “I do.” He kisses Beverly and shakes Michael's hand. Dad takes his seat in front row/left side next to Valerie.

Flowers handed to Patty and couple is brought together for the start of ceremony.

GREETING / WELCOME Reverend

Good afternoon and welcome!
Today we are here to honor a very special couple in their journey of love & marriage.
Beverly & Michael, in their devotion, respect, and love for each other, come before us to be united in marriage, and to dedicate themselves to each other's happiness and well-being as husband and wife.

OPENING PRAYER Reverend

Let us pray:

Michael and Beverly, in joining your lives may God grant you both...
Love... to afford each other a special quality of time together.
Joy...in the accomplishments of one another.
Understanding...that your interests and desires will not always be the same.
Friendship...based on mutual trust.
Courage...to speak of a misunderstanding and to work on a solution before the setting of the sun.
Compassion...to comfort each other in pain and sorrow.
Foresight...to realize rainbows follow rainy days.
And Awareness...to live each day with the knowledge that there is no promise of tomorrow.
May God bless you and keep you in the Palm of His hand. Amen.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION & REMEMBRANCE Reverend

Beverly & Michael are especially grateful to all of you for attending their wedding.
They will long remember this time of celebration, and whether your trip here was local or you traveled a long distance, they are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day.
You're all a very special part of their lives and you've been chosen to share in their wedding day because you mean so much to them.
We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today. And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment.

We especially remember Michael's mother, Joan, and Beverly's step-father, Steve as well as the couple's deceased grandparents.

Though they are absent physically, the memories of these beautiful people live on in our hearts today and always and we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit.

READING # 1 Aunt Margaret

Beverly & Michael have invited her Aunt Margaret to share the following reading with us called “Blessings for a Marriage” by James Dillet Freeman.

May your marriage bring you all the exquisite excitements a marriage should bring, and may life grant you also patience, tolerance, and understanding.
May you always need one another - not so much to fill your emptiness as to help you to know your fullness. A mountain needs a valley to be complete; the valley does not make the mountain less, but more; and the valley is more a valley because it has a mountain towering over it. So let it be with you and you.
May you need one another, but not out of weakness.
May you want one another, but not out of lack.
May you entice one another, but not compel one another.
May you embrace one another, but not out encircle one another.
May you succeed in all important ways with one another, and not fail in the little graces.
May you look for things to praise, often say, “I love you!” and take no notice of small faults.
If you have quarrels that push you apart, may both of you hope to have good sense enough to take the first step back.
May you enter into the mystery, which is the awareness of one another's presence - no more physical than spiritual, warm and near when you are side-by-side, and warm and near when you are in separate rooms or even distant cities. May you have happiness, and may you find it making one another happy.
May you have love, and may you find it loving one another.

HAND FASTING CEREMONY Reverend & Couple

Beverly and Michael have chosen to include a traditional hand fasting ceremony in their wedding ceremony to commemorate their entering together into the union of marriage.

In Europe, until the mid-1700’s, few unions were sanctified in a church or synagogue. Rather, they were celebrated by a simple hand fasting ceremony in which the two partners joined hands over the village anvil, in the fields, or in a grove of trees. The couple would link hands to form an infinite circle, and then, their hands or wrists would be bound together with ribbons or a cord, symbolizing the binding together of their two lives into one. It is from this practice that we got the expression “tying the knot.”

Please take each other's hands.

[You'll join hands in the shape of the infinity symbol.]

These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever.
These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future.
These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.
These are the hands that will comfort you in illness, and hold you when fear or grief racks your mind.
These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.
These are the hands that will give you support and encourage you to chase your dreams.
And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.

Hand Fasting Questions

Beverly & Michael, will you share yourselves freely and generously with each other, making time to be together?

Couple answers: “We will.”

The first binding is thus made. The blue in this cord is symbolic of water, so that your love may flow and fill you to your depths.

[The cord is draped over the couple's hands - medallion resting on the top.]

Will you each seek to ease the other's pain and suffering, sharing laughter and joy?

Couple answers: “We will.”

The second binding is thus made. The color brown is symbolic of earth, that your love may be wise and nurturing, and your happiness abundant.

[The cord is tied in a loose knot under the couple's hands.]

Will you strive to keep your romance alive through daily actions and words of encouragement?

Couple answers: “We will.”

The third binding is thus made with red, symbolic of fire, that your love may be bright and passionate.

[The cord is tied in a loose knot over the couple's hands.]

Will you both help each other to grow in spirit and wisdom?

Couple answers: “We will.”

The fourth binding is thus made with white, symbolic of air that your love may be as limitless as the sky, and your union filled with wise choices.

[The cord is tied in a loose knot over the couple's hands.]

You are now bound together, symbolized by the tying of this cord. You hold in your own hands and hearts the making or breaking of this union. While we are now going to remove the cord, the knot will remain tied symbolizing two lives becoming one.

[The cord is removed and placed on table.]

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

You come here today to pledge your love for one another and formally acknowledge that which your hearts already know…that your lives are meant to be shared as one, that you are stronger together than you are apart, and that, for all the days yet to come, you wish to share together all life's joys and challenges, committed one to the other....
A lifetime commitment is the promise made and kept between two people
with intentions of trusting, supporting and loving each other.
You will now make those promises by pledging your commitment to each other

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please join hands and look into each other's eyes as you exchange your vows with one another by repeating after me.

Michael to Beverly:

I love you, not only for what you are,
but what I am, when I am with you.

Beverly to Michael:

I love you not only for what you have made of yourself,
but what you are making of me.

Michael to Beverly:

I love you for the part of me
that you bring out.

Beverly to Michael:

I love you for putting your hand into my heaped up heart
and passing over all the foolish and weak things
that you can't help seeing there

Michael to Beverly:

And for drawing out into the light
all the beautiful belongings
that no one else has looked quite far enough to find.

Beverly to Michael:

I love you because you have done more
than any creed could have done to make me good,
and more than any fate could have done to make me happy.

Both will repeat these six lines together.

You have done it without a touch,
without a word, without a sign.
You have done it by being yourself —
my companion and comforter,
guide and friend.
The one I love.

Beverly and Michael will now share their personal vows with each other.

Michael will go first, then Beverly.

READING # 2 Marci

At this time, I'd like to invite Beverly's friend, Marci, to share a wonderful reading with us called “Lovely Love Story” by Edward Monkton.

Lovely Love Story
Edward Monkton

The fierce Dinosaur was trapped inside his cage of ice. Although it was cold he was happy in there. It was, after all, HIS cage. Then along came the Lovely Other Dinosaur.

The Lovely Other Dinosaur melted the Dinosaur's cage with kind words and loving thoughts. I like this Dinosaur, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur. Although he is fierce he is also tender and he is funny. He is also quite clever though I will not tell him this for now.

I like this Lovely Other Dinosaur, thought the Dinosaur. She is beautiful and she is different and she smells so nice. She is also a free spirit which is a quality I much admire in a dinosaur.

But he can be so distant and so peculiar at times, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur. He is also overly fond of Things. Are all Dinosaurs so overly fond of Things?

But her mind skips from here to there so quickly, thought the Dinosaur. She is also uncommonly keen on Shopping. Are all Lovely Other Dinosaurs so uncommonly keen on shopping?

I will forgive his peculiarity and his concern for Things, thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur. For they are part of what makes him a richly charactered individual.

I will forgive her skipping mind and her fondness for shopping, thought the Dinosaur. For she fills our life with beautiful thought and wonderful surprises. Besides, I am not unkeen on shopping either.

Now the Dinosaur and the Lovely Other Dinosaur are old. Look at them. Together they stand on the hill telling each other stories and feeling the warmth of the sun on their backs.

And that, my friends, is how it is with love. Let us all be Dinosaurs and Lovely Other Dinosaurs together. For the sun is warm. And the world is a beautiful place.

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

It is believed that the circle was a symbol of eternity, completeness, holiness and peace; a sign that life, happiness, and love have no beginning or end.
Your wedding rings are an outward sign of an inward love that unites your hearts. When you look at them, be reminded of the excitement of this day and the love that you feel in this moment.

Charles, may I have the rings please?

Best Man hands rings to Rev.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please look into each other's eyes as you share your vows by repeating after me:

Michael, please repeat after me.

Beverly, I give you this ring
As a sign that I choose you
To be my lover, my partner,
And my best friend
Today, tomorrow, and always.

Beverly, please repeat after me.

Michael, I give you this ring
As a sign that I choose you
To be my lover, my partner,
And my best friend
Today, tomorrow, and always.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

Beverly & Michael, before I declare you husband and wife, I want to wish you both much love and happiness as you begin this new journey together.

May all that you are, always be in love. May all that is love, always be in you.
May your love be as beautiful on each day you share, as it is on this day of celebration.
And may each day you share be as precious to you as the day you first fell in love.
May you always see and encourage the best in each other.
May the challenges life brings your way make your marriage even stronger,
and may you always be each other's best friend and greatest love.

Remember to keep lots of laughter in your life and love will never be far behind.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Beverly & Michael, you have shared this moment and these promises with your family and friends, as a symbol of deeply loving each other and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to one another.
Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, it is truly my joy and pleasure to pronounce you husband and wife.

Michael, you may kiss your beautiful bride.

(Kiss and applause)

Flowers handed to Beverly.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is over, the celebration can begin.
There will be a very quick receiving line at the stairs so you can give the Bride & Groom your best wishes aw you to head to the cocktail hour on the patio where they'll join you shortly, after they've takes some pictures.
But first it is my privilege and pleasure to introduce to you, in their new relationship as husband and wife, Michael & Beverly.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music / Acoustic Guitar

Michael & Beverly exit, followed by bridal party then parents/family, Reverend and guests.

THE MARRIAGE CEREMONY OF
JAMIE
&
MICHAEL

Flanders Valley
80 Pleasant Hill Road, Flanders, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / Trio

Music played while guests are seated.

PROCESSIONAL Music / Trio

The Reverend, Best Man (Ryan) and Groomsmen enter first and take their places in the line–up. Groomsmen enter in this order:

  1. Daniel
  2. Shane
  3. Larry
  4. Tommy (furthest from Groom)

Bride’s grandmother (Joan) enters with groom’s grandmother (Louise); they proceed to their seats in the front row – Joan will sit on the left side, Louise on the right side

Groom’s grandfather & his wife (Paul & Franny) enter and proceed to their seats in the front row/right side.

Groom enters with his parents (Basil & Paige); they proceed to their seats in the front row/right side. Mike joins line–up.

The Bridesmaids enter and take their places in the line–up. Bridesmaids enter beginning with the furthest BM from Jamie:

  1. Lucrezia (furthest from Bride)
  2. Janeen
  3. Dawn
  4. Kristin
  5. Erin
  6. Taryn
  7. Caitlin

Matron–of–Honor (Jill) enters and takes her place in the line–up.

Ring bearer (Brendan) enters with his dad assisting; they proceed to their seats in the first or second row/left side.

Flower girl (Rachel) enters and proceeds to front where she’ll sit with family.

Music changes.

Bride enters with her mother (Denise); they proceed to front row where Reverend and Groom greet them. Reverend asks the following question: “Who gives this Bride, Jamie, to be married to this Groom, Michael?”

Mom responds “I do.” She kisses Jamie and Michael before taking her seat in the front row/left side.

Flowers handed to Jill and couple is brought together for start of ceremony.

GREETING / WELCOME Reverend

Good evening family and friends. We are here to honor a very special couple in their journey of love & marriage. Jamie and Michael in their respect and love for each other, wish to unite in the bond of marriage and to dedicate themselves to each other’s happiness as husband and wife.
Today, their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined as one.
Please be seated.

RECOGNITION OF FRIENDS / FAMILY Reverend

Jamie and Michael, today you are surrounded by your families and friends, all of whom have gathered to witness and share in the joy of this occasion. On behalf of Jamie and Michael, welcome! They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day. By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other. And you support their decision to commit themselves to a lifelong relationship.

In marriage, we give ourselves freely and generously into the hands of the one we love, and in doing so, each of us receives the love and trust of the other as our most precious gift. But even as that gift is shared by two people who are in love, it also touches the friends and family members who in various ways support and contribute to the relationship. This is why gathering as a community is such an important part of a wedding celebration. You are their families and friends, and whether your trip here was local or you traveled a long distance, they thank each of you for making the journey here to be with them.

REMEMBRANCE Reverend

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today. And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment. They are our grandparents, family members and friends, some from the present, some from the past.

We especially remember Jamie’s grandfather, Roy, and Michael’s great–grandparents, Betty & Sydney and his grandparents, Catherine & Sam.

Although these loved ones are not physically with us, we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit. The memories of all these beautiful people live on in our hearts today and always.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT/THANKS TO PARENTS Reverend

Today represents not only the joining of Jamie and Michael but also the joining of their families. Jamie and Michael would like to recognize their parents on this occasion. They offer their deepest gratitude to their parents for the unconditional gifts of love and support that they have continually offered. You have inspired them to become who they are today and they thank you from the bottom of their hearts.

PRESENTATION OF ROSES TO MOTHERS Reverend, Couple & Mothers

As a way to acknowledge and honor the merging of families, they will present each of their mother’s with a rose symbolizing their deep love and appreciation for all they have done for them throughout their lives.

Couple presents roses to Mothers.

Among the many things that giving roses symbolizes, perhaps the most important is eternal love.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Jamie and Michael, marriage is the supreme sharing, and challenging adventure in the most intimate of human relationships. It is the happy uniting of two people whose affection and understanding have become a deep and enduring love. Those who take these vows have their lives blended together as one.

Today you are agreeing to share life’s deepest and richest experiences. You are adding to your life not only the affection of each other, but also the companionship and comfort of mutual respect. When you enter into marriage, you enter into one of life’s most important relationships. It is a gift, given to bring comfort when there is sorrow, peace when there is restlessness, laughter when there is unhappiness, and love when it is shared. Love makes burdens lighter because you divide them. It makes joys more intense because you share them.

To love is to enter a whole new world, a world of togetherness, a world of sharing.
Always remember those unique qualities that drew you to each other in the beginning… the thrill of discovery…. That wonderful feeling of oneness when your eyes met.

To love is to constantly search for new ways to bring each other to happiness, to make the most of every moment you share together.
With love there is no need to pretend… where you can be yourselves….
And know within your hearts, you will be accepted by one another.

To love is to always believe and trust in one another.
To love is to dream, and to dare….
And always believe that all things are possible with love.

HAND WASHING CEREMONY Reverend & Couple

Jamie & Michael, today, in front of your family and friends, you start your life together anew as a married couple. As with any new endeavor, it is best to start with a clean slate — putting problems big and small behind you. You recognize that the person you have chosen is not perfect, yet fits with you in a way no other person can. Whatever difficulties you may have experienced, today you have decided that your love is bigger than any of them, and you have chosen a life together.

So, in a way, this ceremony is about starting your marriage with a clean slate. As a way to represent this, Jamie & Michael are including the Hand Washing Ceremony. Water brings forgiveness and we all need forgiveness. We need to forgive others and we need to forgive ourselves.

Couple approaches a table, which has a glass bowl of water and two hand towels.

As you wash your hands together in this bowl of water, you are washing away your past failures, relationships and mistakes, giving you a clean fresh start into your marriage.

Couple washes their hands.

Allowing yourselves to have your hands dried by each other signifies your vulnerability. And we have to be vulnerable — it breaks through isolation and in our own vulnerability, we become more caring and understanding of our mate.

Couple dries one another’s hands.

In a loving and compassionate marriage, to achieve the greatest intimacy, you must have the courage to be open and vulnerable to each other.

Jamie and Michael, do you begin your lives together with grace and compassion?

Couple responds: “We do.”

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Jamie and Michael will exchange their personal vows with each other.

Michael to Jamie:

Jamie, when we met 4 years ago in Morristown on our first date, I knew that I had found someone special and someone who I wanted to share my life with. We talked for hours that night and it became clear to me that you were everything that I had been looking for. You are beautiful both inside and out and as anyone who knows you can attest, your heart is genuinely pure and you are always looking out for everyone in your life. The love you have for your family is a quality that drew me in from the start, and over the last few years I have formed such close bonds with everyone and I am grateful for these connections. I can’t wait to be your husband and create so many more beautiful memories as we set out on the next chapter in our lives, Together. I want to be the best husband, and eventually the best father that I can possibly be. I always want the light in your eyes to remain shining and the love in your heart to keep burning, as I vow today to keep these same qualities alive inside of me. I love you now, and forever.

Jamie to Michael:

Mike, this time exactly 4 years ago, little did I know that the next weekend I would meet my future husband. On May 22, 2012, my life changed for the better. The moment we met I knew it was something special. That night, I told my mom how excited I was about you. I didn't even wait to get home, I texted her from the restaurant bathroom. Our relationship sky rocketed from there and here we are today. You are 100% the most caring and respectful person I have ever known. Your selfless ways and honest heart are what attracts me to you more every day. I feel so lucky to have you by my side to enjoy all the good times, as well as be there for each other through hard times. Thank you for loving me and filling my days with joy.

I promise to care for you, laugh with you, be your biggest supporter, be your partner in parenthood, your best friend, and love you all the days of our lives.

Please join hands and look into each other’s eyes.

Michael to Jamie:

Michael, do you give yourself to Jamie in marriage?
Do you promise to love her in good times and in bad?
To cherish her and to always hold her in the highest regard?
Do you promise these things to Jamie today and all the days of your life?

Michael responds “I do.”

Jamie to Michael:

Jamie, do you give yourself to Michael in marriage?
Do you promise to love him in good times and in bad?
Do you promise to cherish him and to always hold him in the highest regard?
Do you promise these things to Michael today and all the days of your life?

Jamie responds “I do.”

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

For as long as people have been getting married, they have taken symbols of remembrance along the way to frequently stir the sincerity of what they, as partners, always believed in and what they thought protected their relationship and the best qualities therein.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Reverend asks Best Man, Ryan, for rings.

Wedding rings are an outward and visible sign of an inward spiritual grace and the unbroken circle of love, signifying to all the union of Jamie and Michael in marriage. As often as you look upon these rings, may you be reminded of this moment and the love that you are promising to one another.

Michael, please repeat after me:

Jamie, I give you this ring
as a symbol of my love,
and that I am choosing to share
my life with you.
I give you this ring,
with my pledge to love you,
today, tomorrow and always.

Jamie, please repeat after me:

Michael, I give you this ring
as a symbol of my love,
and that I am choosing to share
my life with you.
I give you this ring,
with my pledge to love you,
today, tomorrow and always.

REVEREND’S BEST WISHES Reverend

The two of you are now joined in one unbroken circle.
Wherever you go, may you always return to one another in your togetherness.
May you two find in each other the love for which all souls long.
Before I declare you husband and wife, I want to wish you much love and happiness as you begin this new journey together

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Your union has already been created by friendship, respect and love. Today you’ve promised each other your undying love and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other.
Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, it is truly my joy and pleasure to declare that you are now husband and wife.

Mike, you may kiss your bride.

Flowers handed back to Jamie.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is over and the celebration can begin.
But first, it is my honor & privilege to present to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife – Mr. & Mrs. Michael & Jamie!

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music / Trio

Bride & Groom exit first followed by the Bridal Party:

  1. Ryan escorting Jill
  2. Daniel escorting Caitlin & Taryn
  3. Shane escorting Erin & Kristin
  4. Larry escorting Dawn
  5. Tommy escorting Janeen & Lucrezia

Then parents, families, Rev. and guests.

THE WEDDING CEREMONY OF
LENNY
&
KOFI

Highlawn Pavilion
381 Eagle Rock Avenue, West Orange, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE DJ / Marshall

Music played while guests are being seated.

PROCESSIONAL DJ / Marshall

The Reverend enters first and takes his place in line-up.

Grooms enter together and proceed to line-up where they are brought together for start of ceremony.

GREETING Reverend

Good evening friends and family.
We have come together for an occasion of utmost importance in the lives of Lenny & Kofi
They have invited you, their family and friends to share in their joy, to participate as celebrants in their commitment to each other.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF FAMILY AND FRIENDS Reverend

Lenny and Kofi, this evening you are surrounded by your family and friends,
all of whom have gathered to witness and share in the joy of this occasion.
On behalf of Lenny and Kofi, welcome and thank you for joining them.
And, whether your trip here was local or you traveled a long distance,
as I know some of you have, traveling from MA, NC, FL and CA,
they thank each of you for making the journey to be here with them this evening.
By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other.
And you support their decision to commit themselves to a lifelong relationship.

For Lenny and Kofi this celebration means that they are going to continue counting on one another, and treating one another with care and respect.
That they are going to continue to share their lives with each other
as partners and friends, and to go on building their future together.
This is an expression of the spiritual bond that they experience together.
They see their union not as a time of static contentment with each other
and the world around them, but as an ongoing process of exploring the fullness
of their individual persons and sharing their friendship and love with all of us, their friends and family.
Together each of you has played some part in bringing them to this moment and they thank you.

INVOCATION Reverend

This ceremony symbolizes the intimate sharing of two lives,
yet this sharing must not diminish but enhance the individuality of each partner.
A union that lasts is one which is continuously developing
and one in which each person is individually developing,
while growing in understanding of the other.
Deep knowledge of another is not something that can be achieved in a short time
and real understanding of the other's feelings can develop fully only with years of intimacy.

This wonderful knowledge of another person grows out of really caring for that person so much that one wants to understand as completely as possible what the other is feeling.
Thus, it is possible to share not only joys and successes but also the burden of sorrows and failures.
To be known in this way is a priceless thing because such understanding and acceptance
make it easier to live with our problems, failings and worries.

Most of you have known Lenny and Kofi for quite some time - either as individuals before they'd even met each other, or as a couple. And, most of you would probably agree with their comment that they are a curious fit - different ages, backgrounds, interests, and temperaments. But, as is the case for so many couples that are drawn together, their relationship just seems to work perhaps because of their differences but also because they share the same overarching values and life goals.

And, as most of us know, and can relate to, they've faced challenges over the past 7+ years - challenges they've shared with many of you, which has made them stronger as individuals and as a couple.

Lenny & Kofi, on this day of your wedding,
you stand within the charmed circle of your love, and this is as it should be.
But love is not meant to be the possession of two people alone.
Rather it should serve as a source of common energy,
as a form in which you find the strength to live your lives with courage.

As you have, from the beginning of your relationship,
you must continue to bond closer together each and every day.
You must continue to grow in mutual respect for one another,
continue to work at your relationship, and deeply care for one another,
not only through the happy times of life but those difficult and hard times.
By doing this and faithfully living out the words you say in this ceremony,
you will together and individually make unique contributions to the world.

We who have gathered here to witness your commitment to one another,
thank you for allowing us to share in your joy on this special occasion.

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Lenny & Kofi, today you are agreeing to share life's deepest and richest experiences.
But your ceremony today is not just a celebration of your relationship but also of the people who have recognized, accepted, respected, and been a part of your love over the years.

Real love goes far beyond the feelings of romance and bliss.
Real love says you are stronger together than when you are apart.
It is establishing a relationship in which the independence is equal, dependence is mutual, and the obligation is reciprocal.
A successful relationship is not something that just happens.
It takes work and it takes effort.
Most importantly, it takes a commitment from both of you.

You have come here today to affirm your love for another and formally acknowledge that which your heats already know…that your lives are meant to be shared as one, that you are stronger together than you are apart, and that you wish to share together all life's joys and challenges, committed one to the other.

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Lenny & Kofi, in a moment you will declare your intentions and exchange your words of commitment.
You can never really know what hills and valleys will stretch out in front of you in the years ahead.
There's only the future, unlimited and unknowable and the promise to make the journey together.

Lenny & Kofi will now share their personal words with each other.

INTRODUCTION TO THE EXCHANGE OF RINGS Reverend

The circle is the symbol of the sun, the earth and the universe and
has long been a symbol of commitment.
It is the symbol of wholeness, perfection and peace.

The ring is a symbol of the unity into which your two lives are now joined in an unbroken circle.
May the rings you are about to give to each other, and proudly wear from this day on,
always remind you of the words you have spoken here today.
As often as either of you looks upon these rings, may you be reminded of this moment
and the love and commitment you have promised to each other.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Kofi, please repeat after me:

Lenny, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion,
and my choice to share,
my life and dreams with you.
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
today, tomorrow, always and forever.

Lenny, please repeat after me:

Kofi, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion,
and my choice to share
my life and dreams with you.
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
today, tomorrow, always and forever.

Your rings proclaim your love for one another. Wear them as a symbol of your union and as a sign to all the world of your love for and devotion to one another.

DECLARATION OF COMMITMENT
BREAKING OF THE GLASS & JUMPING THE BROOM Reverend

In a traditional Jewish wedding, the breaking of the glass is subject to many interpretations, as it refers to the tragic destruction of the Second Temple in Jerusalem and all subsequent sufferings of the Jewish people.
It is a reminder that life will bring sadness as well as joy.
Even in a moment of such great joy as this ceremony,
we should remember that there is still pain and suffering in the world
and we have a responsibility to help relieve some of that suffering.
The breaking of the glass also symbolizes the breaking down of barriers between people of different cultures and faiths.
It shows us that love and relationships, like glass, are fragile and must be protected.
The glass is broken to protect this marriage with the implied prayer:
“As this glass shatters, so may your marriage never break.”

Jumping the broom is a custom relating to wedding ceremonies in different cultural traditions but is most commonly known as a reminder of when African Americans could not legally marry.
Jumping over a broom was a way of ceremonially uniting and legitimizing the union.
Today it represents great joy, a sweeping away of former single lives and past problems, and the welcoming of the new, making way for all good things to come for the couple as they cross a threshold into a new beginning.
It also symbolizes the joining of two families, showing respect and paying homage to those who came before and paved the way.
Finally, it is a call of support for the marriage from the entire community of family and friends.

Starting a new life with another person requires a “leap of faith.”
Lenny & Kofi, although still individuals, will begin a new life together as a married couple.
They leave behind the past and jump into the future together secure in their love.
By taking the leap, they make a gesture of dedication to working together through all that lies ahead.

In a moment, Lenny and Kofi will break the glass, signifying the end of the ceremony, and then they will jump over the broom indicating it is time for the celebration to begin.

Lenny and Kofi, by the words and actions of this ceremony
you have taken each other as partners for life.
In front of this community of family and friends, you have spoken words of commitment and given each other rings.
You have solemnly promised to love, honor, comfort and cherish each other,
for as long as you both shall live.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, and by virtue of the authority vested in me, it is my joy and pleasure to pronounce you a happily wedded couple..

As Lenny & Kofi break the glass, everyone should shout: Mazel Tov,
which means congratulations and good luck.

(Lenny & Kofi step on the glasses w/right foot and break them.)

Everyone: Mazel Tov.

Rev will ask everyone to count 1, 2, 3... Jump!

Everyone: 1, 2, 3... Jump!

Congratulations!

THE MARRIAGE CEREMONY OF
ASHLEY
&
KEN

Reeves Reed Arboretum
165 Hobart Avenue, Summit, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE

Music played while guest are seated. Ashley's father, Martin, and his wife, Erika, will be pre -seated.

PROCESSIONAL

Groom's parents, Ken & Deb, enter and proceed to front row/right side.

Bride's mother, Beth enters with Shawn & Ryan (Sons); they proceed to front row/left side.

Reverend enters with Groom and Best Man (Chris).

Bridesmaids enter and make their way to the front in this order:

  1. Nicole (next to Bride)
  2. Danielle (furthest from Bride)

Bride enters with her father (Ed); they proceed to front row. Reverend and Groom step forward greet them.

Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this Bride - Ashley - to be married to this Groom - Kenneth?

Bride's father responds: “Her mother and I do.”

Ed kisses Ashley and shakes Ken's hand then takes his seat in front row/left side next to Beth.

Flowers handed to Nicole.

Couple is brought together and the ceremony begins.

GREETING Reverend

Good afternoon family and friends. Welcome to the beautiful Reeves Reed Arboretum!

We have come here today to celebrate the marriage of Ashley and Kenneth.
By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other.
And you support their decision to commit themselves to a lifelong relationship.
Today, their lives which began on separate paths, will be joined together as one.

OPENING PRAYER Reverend

Let us pray:

God, grant that the love which unites Ashley and Ken may grow in abiding happiness.
May their relationship continue to grow in the years to come.
May there be peace in their home, quietness and confidence in their hearts.
And whatever changes time may bring, let today's wedding ceremony remain as a treasured memory and a guide to life for Ashley and Ken.
Amen.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION OF FAMILY, FRIENDS Reverend

Ashley and Ken, today you are surrounded by your family and friends,
all of whom have gathered to witness and share in the joy of this occasion.

On behalf of Ashley and Ken, thank you for joining them. They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day. And whether your trip her was local, or you traveled a long distance, they thank each of you for making the journey to celebrate with them today.

In marriage, we give ourselves freely and generously into the hands of the one we love, and in doing so, each of us receives the love and trust of the other as our most precious gift.
New experiences lie before you with opportunities to grow deeper in love with each other.
As you walk hand in hand into the future, cherish each moment as a gift —
a gift, given to strengthen the bond between you.

But even as that gift is shared by two people who are in love, it also touches the friends and family members who in various ways support and contribute to the relationship. Together each of you, their families and friends, has played some part in bringing Ashley and Ken to this moment.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT/THANKS TO PARENTS Reverend

As Ashley & Ken come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and thank their Parents for the endless love and support that they have given them throughout the years, and for all they have done in bringing them to this special moment. Your unconditional gifts of love have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you, from the bottom of their hearts. Without you, this day would not be possible.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Ashley and Ken, you both know you've developed a deep love and respect for each other and have already proven this is true over the past eight years of your relationship.
In fact, for any of you who don't know, they are celebrating their 8 -year anniversary today.
And, Ken proposed to Ashley on this same date last year. But it never hurts to be reminded of why two people fell in love in the first place and continue to fall in love with each other again and again.

Each of you brings gifts to the other today. Gifts of hope and laughter, focus and seriousness of purpose. Sensitivity and recognition of the beautiful and the profound.
You've searched for and dreamed about that special someone
who would embody and express the gifts you now stand ready to give and to receive.
The relationship you're entering into today as a wedded couple,
is truly one of life's most important relationships.
It is a gift, given to bring comfort when there is sorrow, peace when there is restlessness, laughter when there is unhappiness, and love when it is shared.

No ceremony can create your marriage.
Only you can do that through love, patience, dedication, perseverance;
through talking and listening and trying to understand; through helping and supporting and believing in each other; through learning to forgive, learning to respect and appreciate your differences,
and learning to make the important things matter and to let go of the rest.
What this ceremony can do is to witness and affirm the choice you have made
to begin a new life today as husband and wife.

READING Reverend

Ashley and Ken and asked me to read a wonderful story called “Color Together” by Bob Perks. As they told me, “We both agree that this represents our relationship very well.”

Love is like a box of Crayola® crayons created by God.
Before you are the blank pages that are drawn
through a lifetime of commitment and caring.
Although our generation has set the pace for coloring outside the lines,
my advice to you both, always color within the lines. Don't look at them as barriers or roadblocks that limit,
but guidelines to keep your love strong.

Be creative. Use your own colors.
Roses aren't always red and sunsets are never the same.
Relationships too, should be like sharing a coloring book.
Decide together what page to work on and then share.
Perhaps one is better at coloring the sky and the other the grass and flowers.
Never criticize the other's work.
If you both desire to use the same crayon,
choose a different shade or wait until the other is finished.
Compromise and patience are the backbone of a strong union.

It is important at times for both of you to have your own page to color.
A strong couple stands together but each casts their own shadow.
In coloring, this is accomplished by first agreeing on two connected pages
and sitting close together.
Keep the crayons sharpened.
The joy of love is in the details.
At times when you are challenged by life or disagreements
pull out the coloring book and sit at your kitchen table and draw.
No words need to be spoken.
The peace and joy that come from creating beauty
will not permit the ugliness of anger to exist.

Always be thankful to the God of all colors.
He created you both in love and graciously brought you together.
Finally, always clean up afterwards.
Relationships, like a crayon box, have a place for everything.
You will discover that when one is missing the whole box seems incomplete.
May your life together be as colorful as you both have made everyone's lives.

INTRO TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Ashley and Ken, you are about to exchange your vows.
These vows are an expression of the promises you have chosen to make to each other.
Marriage is the uniting of two people and a journey towards the unity of two hearts.
The vows you share will thrive on the love that you have for each other
and your marriage will grow deeper as each of you grows older.

WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Ken to Ashley:

Ashley, because of you, I laugh, I smile, I dare to dream and challenge myself. When life becomes difficult, I promise to stand by you and support you, so that through our unity we can accomplish more together than we could alone. I look forward with much anticipation to spending the rest of our lives together. I vow to love, honor, and cherish you, no matter what lies before us, for the rest of eternity.

Ashley to Ken:

Ashley, because of you, I laugh, I smile, I dare to dream and challenge myself. When life becomes difficult, I promise to stand by you and support you, so that through our unity we can accomplish more together than we could alone. I look forward with much anticipation to spending the rest of our lives together. I vow to love, honor, and cherish you, no matter what lies before us, for the rest of eternity.

Ashley and Ken will now share their personal words with each other.

Ken to Ashley:

There are moments in life that you never forget, the day I first saw you is one of those moments for me. D Wing, Corner Locker, yea, I still remember… There are also events that change your life, 525 '04 is one of those defining times. Exactly 8 years ago we started our relationship, and today I can say that was the best decision of my life. Ashley you have impacted me in more ways than I can even count, I am the man I am today, very much thanks to you. Motivation, inspiration, friendship; you were always there in times of need. My lovies, I can't wait to spend the rest of our lives together, you are my only one, I love you more than words can express, until the day I die, your KEJM.

Ashley to Ken:

Ken you are my best friend and my only one. When I´m with you, I feel I can be the person I want to be, and I cannot imagine my life without you. You make me smile, you stick up for me, you take care of me and you are always interested in what I have to say and do. Today, I want to make a promise to you and to myself, in front of our friends and family, to love and respect you for the rest of my life. I will always trust and value your opinions, and stand by your actions. I will ask for help when I need it, and offer it when necessary. Let us be friends and lovers, and grow old together. Always and forever.

LOVE LOCKS CEREMONY Reverend & Couple

Love, compassion, trust, and pride are but a few of the many emotions that we as human beings feel towards each other. These emotions connect us, but it is often difficult to adequately convey their strength and significance to those we love. Sometimes mere words aren't enough, and in those occasions a unique gift that symbolizes our love speaks what words can't.

Love locks are a custom by which sweethearts lock padlocks together and affix them to something stationary such as a chain, fence, pole, gate or tree. Locking your love is the ancient Chinese custom of symbolically locking one's love on a never -ending chain. No one knows how or when this ancient Chinese custom began.

Following the example of this beautiful ancient custom, our modern world can now connect through life's most precious moments. Love padlocks are now a worldwide tradition where people can lock their love with another forever. Perhaps one of the most significant inspirations for love padlocks comes from Rome, Italy. On the Ponte Milvio, one of Rome's oldest and most famous bridges. Young lovers would write their names on a padlock, chain it to the Ponte Milvio Bridge, then throw the keys into the river in a gesture of undying love.

We are going to inscribe them ahead of time this week, we each have our own lock that we will place on the tree individually first, and then together we will lock the unity lock.

It is not solely about the lock itself, but much like a diamond ring represents the lasting bond of marriage, so does the love padlock symbolize a movement towards love, acceptance, and unity. As your hearts are now joined together in love, so will these padlocks be locked together forever.

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

Ashley & Ken, as you walk through life together, remember that you are unique and different from one another. Give your love openly and honestly. Do not try to change each other, for your differences are what brought you together.

If the air becomes too close, make a little space so each can breathe.
When the path is too narrow, pick one of you to go first.
Be willing to follow and never be afraid to lead.
Maintain your capacity for wonder, spontaneity, humor, and sensitivity.
Trust your partner and trust yourself - for a marriage is a journey that leads to greater love.

Chris, may I have the rings?

RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

These wedding rings symbolize the unbroken circle of love, signifying to all your union in marriage
As often as either of you look upon these rings, may you be reminded of this moment
and the love and commitment you have promised to one another.

Ken, please repeat after me.

Ashley, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion,
for all that you have given me,
and all we will share together.
With all that I am,
And all that I have,
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
today, tomorrow, and forever.

Ashley, please repeat after me.

Kenneth, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion,
for all that you have given me,
and all we will share together.
With all that I am,
And all that I have,
I give you this ring, with the pledge to love you
today, tomorrow, and forever.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

Ashley & Ken, before I declare you husband and wife,
I want to wish you both much love and happiness as you begin this new journey.

The two of you are now joined in one unbroken circle.
Wherever you go, may you always return to one another in your togetherness.
May you two find in each other the love for which all souls long.
To make your marriage work will take love.
Love should be the core of your marriage; love is the reason you are here.
But it also will take trust — to know in your hearts that you want the best for each other.

It will take dedication to live by the vows you have made.
To stay open to one another, to learn and to grow together even when this is not always easy to do.
It will take faith to keep your promises.
To always be willing to go forward to tomorrow, never really knowing what tomorrow will bring.
And it will take commitment — to hold true to the journey you have both pledged to share together today.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Ashley and Ken, today you have promised each other your undying love and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, it is my joy and pleasure to declare that you are now husband and wife.

Ken, you may kiss your bride

[Flowers handed back to Ashley.]

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Family and friends, the ceremony is over so let the celebration begin.
Ashley and Ken will be taking photos with their families and the bridal party.
They invite you to enjoy the gardens and want to remind you that the reception will begin @ 6 pm @ Galloping Hill Caterers in Union.
But first, it is my honor and privilege to introduce to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife Kenneth & Ashley.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL

Ashley and Ken exit first, followed by the Bridal Party:

  1. Chris exits by himself.
  2. Danielle & Nicole follow together

Then Parents, Reverend and Guests.

THE MARRIAGE CEREMONY OF
AUBREE
&
JEFF

Olde Mill Inn
Basking Ridge, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / DJ James

Music played while guests are being seated. Grandparents are pre-seated prior to start of Processional.

Groom's mother & step-dad (Geri & Paul) enter and proceed to their seats in the front row/right side.

Bride's mother (Rhonda) enters with Corey & Kyle; they proceed to her seat in front row/left side. Corey & Kyle return to staging area before Processional begins.

PROCESSIONAL Music / DJ James

Music changes for start of Processional.

The Reverend, Groom, Best Man (Jack) and Groomsmen enter and proceed to ceremony area for start of ceremony. Groomsmen enter in this order:

  1. Corey
  2. Kyle
  3. Steven (furthest from Jeff)

Bridesmaids enter in REVERSE order and proceed to ceremony area for start of ceremony.

  1. Kelli (furthest from Aubree)
  2. Gina
  3. Kelly

Maid-of-Honor (Mina) enters and proceeds to ceremony area for start of ceremony.

Music Changes

The Bride and her father (John) enter and proceed to front row. Reverend and Groom step down to greet them for passing of the Bride.

Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this Bride, Aubree, to be married to this Groom, Jeff?

Dad responds "I do." He kisses Aubree and shakes Jeff's hand, then takes his seat in front row/left side next to Rhonda.

Flowers handed to Mina. Couple is brought together for the start of ceremony.

GREETING/WELCOME Reverend

Good evening, family and friends…Welcome to the Olde Mill Inn!
We have come here today to celebrate the marriage of Aubree and Jeff.
Today, Aubree and Jeff demonstrate their devotion to each other by dedicating themselves to a life together. And they show their respect for each other by setting forth to honor their vows.
Today, their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined as one.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION OF FRIENDS/FAMILY & REMEMBRANCE Reverend

Aubree and Jeff, this evening you are surrounded by your families and friends, all of whom have gathered to witness and share in the joy of this occasion. On behalf of Aubree and Jeff, thank you for joining them. They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day, some traveling from as far away as France, as well as Florida and Michigan.
By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other. And you support their decision to commit themselves to a lifelong relationship. You are their families and friends and they thank each of you for making the journey here to be with them.

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today.
And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment. They are our grandparents, uncles, aunts, family members and friends.
Especially remembered is Jeff's father, Kerry.

Though these wonderful people are not with us physically, we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit and their memories live on in our hearts today and always.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT/THANKS TO PARENTS Reverend

As Aubree and Jeff come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and thank their parents for the endless love and support that they have given them throughout the years, and for all they have done in bringing them to this special moment. Your unconditional gifts of love and support have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you, from the bottom of their hearts.
Without you, this day would not be possible.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Aubree and Jeff, you have chosen this day to stand before these witnesses to take each other as husband and wife. You both know you've developed a deep love and respect for each other and have proven this true over the past few years you've been together.

Deep knowledge of another is not something that can be achieved in a short time and real understanding of the other's feelings can develop fully only with years of intimacy.
This ceremony today symbolizes the intimate sharing of two lives.
A marriage that lasts is one which is continuously developing and one in which each is individually developing, while growing in understanding of the other.

Aubree and Jeff, as you have from the beginning of your relationship, you must continue to bond closer together each and every day. You must continue to grow in mutual respect for one another, continue to work at your relationship, and deeply care for one another, not only through the happy times of life but those difficult and hard times.

When you find someone who can completely turn your world around
you share your hopes for the future and dreams that may or may not come true.
That person is the wind in your sail and your safe harbor in times of storm.
He or she builds you up and shows you the things about yourself that make you special.
There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. Colors are brighter, happiness is fuller, memories are fresher, and commitment is stronger.
The thought of this special person brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there's no need for continuous conversation, but you find you're quite content in just having them nearby.

Aubree and Jeff, I know I speak for everyone here when I say we're happy you found this special person in each other.

READING Reverend

Aubree & Jeff asked me to share a reading that many of you may remember from your childhood. Of course, at that age the message was very different than what we hear as adults from this "Excerpt from the Velveteen Rabbit" by Margery Williams.

"Excerpt from the Velveteen Rabbit"
Margery Williams

"What is REAL?" asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. "Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?"

"Real isn't how you are made," said the Skin Horse. "It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real."

"Does it hurt?" asked the Rabbit.

"Sometimes," said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. "When you are Real you don't mind being hurt."

"Does it happen all at once, like being wound up," he asked, "or bit by bit?"

"It doesn't happen all at once," said the Skin Horse. "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand."

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Aubree and Jeff, there may have been those who didn't understand your love was real. But always remember your love was never theirs to understand. Your love is your own, between the two of you, to treasure, to protect, to nurture and grow. Defend it, and don't ever let it go.

Every marriage is a promise made in the hearts of two people that takes a lifetime to fulfill. You will now make that promise by pledging your commitment to one another.

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please take each other's hands and look into each other's eyes.

Jeff to Aubree:

Jeff, do you give yourself to Aubree in marriage?
Do you promise to encourage and inspire her,
to laugh with her, and to comfort her in times of sorrow and struggle?
Do you promise to love her in good times and in bad,
when life seems easy and when it seems hard.
Do you promise to cherish her and to always hold her in the highest regard?
Do you promise these things to Aubree today and all the days of your life?

Jeff says "I do."

Aubree to Jeff:

Aubree, do you give yourself to Jeff in marriage?
Do you promise to encourage and inspire him,
to laugh with him, and to comfort him in times of sorrow and struggle?
Do you promise to love him in good times and in bad,
when life seems easy and when it seems hard.
Do you promise to cherish him and to always hold him in the highest regard?
Do you promise these things to Jeff today and all the days of your life?

Aubree says "I do."

Aubree and Jeff will now share their personal vows with each other.

Jeff to Aubree:

Aubree, I looked for you for so long. I looked for you for a long, long time. No wonder I couldn't find you at first; I was looking for you before you were even here. I looked for you at 4 years old in that snoopy cake topper I swiped off my birthday cake and ran away with. My brother found me under the back porch hiding with it and asked me why. I said, "I love it so much and I don't want them to take it from me." I really think I was looking for you even then. I looked for you over all the years, and in all the words of every love song ever written that I never really understood until now. I looked for you in sunsets and full moons. I mistakenly looked for you in the empty hearts and lost souls of others.

When I finally decided you didn't exist, there you were. I knew it the moment I saw you. I saw your face and I just knew. Because I saw right inside you, and I saw every wonderful, beautiful part of you. Mostly I saw something I had never felt. I felt home. I never knew what home was until I saw you. And I could live to be a hundred and it wouldn't be time to thank you enough. Thank you for finally giving me a home.

I love you so much. You're my everything. Anyone would agree that of the two of us I should be the one to wonder what the heck does she see in me? But I know you. And as crazy as it is for you to have those thoughts, whenever you have them, whenever you wonder if I only have eyes for you, whenever you wonder if I still love you, whenever you worry, just ask. And I'll make you look deep into my eyes, and my answer will always be the same: "honey……I'm home."

Aubree to Jeff:

Jeff, I always found the concept of fate beautiful.
But it wasn't until I met you that I actually believed in such a thing.
I don't think ever before did I smile the way I did at you that night —
How wonderful it was to find everything I was ever looking for in one person,
One place,
One instant.
Everything.
Jeff, you are my everything.
You are my partner,
My lover,
And most of all,
You are my best friend.
You are the epitome of everything I have ever looked for in another human being.
And I am strong enough to admit that I am weak without you.
You have helped me become the best possible version of myself.
And you have loved me when no one else would have.
They say you can't love someone until you love yourself.
Well, 'they' obviously never met you.
Because it wasn't until I met you that I finally started to believe in myself.
Loving you has been,
and always will be,
the greatest gift I ever received.
To paraphrase Nicholas Sparks: I am nothing special, just a common woman with common thoughts. There are no monuments dedicated to me, and my name will one day be forgotten. But in one respect I have already succeeded as gloriously as anyone who's ever lived: I've loved another will all my heart and soul; and to me, this will always be enough.
I love you.

LOVING WINE CUP CEREMONYReverend & Couple

The years of life are as a cup of wine poured out for you to drink.

[Move to table, couple on either side, Rev. behind.]

Aubree & Jeff, these two bottles containing wine, symbolize your individual spirits, memories, hopes and dreams. They signify the importance of allowing each other the freedom to change and grow as individuals, while developing your mutual spirit as time goes.

[Reverend pours wine from each bottle into each glass.]

The red and white wines have certain properties that are sweet and symbolic of happiness, joy, hope, peace, love and delight. This same wine also holds some bitter properties that are symbolic of disappointment, sorrow, grief, despair, and life's trials and tribulations.

Together the sweet and the bitter represent "Love's Journey" and all of the experiences that are a natural part of it.
Aubree & Jeff, when you drink from your loving cup, may you share all things from this day on with love and understanding. This Loving Cup is symbolic of the pledges you have made to one another to share together the fullness of life. As you drink from this cup, you acknowledge to one another that your lives, separate until this moment, have now become one.

Now drink to the love you've shared in the past.

[The Bride and Groom cheer and sip from their respective cups.]

Drink to your love in the present, on this, your wedding day.

[The Bride and Groom cheer and drink from their respective cups.]

And drink to your love in the future and forever more!

[The Bride and Groom cheer and drink from their respective cups and put them back on the table.]

As you have shared the wine from this Loving Cup, so may you share your lives.
From love all things proceed and unto love they must return.
May you find life's joys heightened, its bitterness sweetened, and all of life enriched by the love of family and friends.

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

For as long as people have been getting married, they have taken symbols of remembrance along the way to frequently stir the sincerity of what they, as partners, always believed in and what they thought protected their relationship and the best qualities therein.

And, from the earliest of times, the circle has been a symbol of completeness, a symbol of committed love. Without beginning or end and with no point of weakness,
the circle is a reminder of eternity and of unending strength.

Wedding rings are made of precious metals that symbolize a love that is pure and enduring.
They are made of rare gems that symbolize a love that is priceless and irreplaceable.
They are made of a perfect circle that symbolizes a love that is permanent and everlasting.
As often as either of you look upon these rings, may you be reminded of this moment
and the love that you have promised to one another.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Reverend asks Groom's son, Jack, for rings.

Jeff, please repeat after me.

Aubree, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love,
and that I am choosing to share my life with you.
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you,
today, tomorrow and always.

Aubree, please repeat after me.

Jeff, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love,
and that I am choosing to share my life with you.
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you,
today, tomorrow and always.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

The two of you are now joined in one unbroken circle.
Wherever you go, may you always return to one another in your togetherness.
May you two find in each other the love for which all souls long.
To make your marriage work will take love.
Love should be the core of your marriage; love is the reason you are here.
But it also will take trust — to know in your hearts that you want the best for each other.
It will take dedication to live by the vows you have made.
To stay open to one another, to learn and to grow together even when this is not always easy to do.
It will take faith to keep your promises. To always be willing to go forward to tomorrow, never really knowing what tomorrow will bring. And it will take commitment — to hold true to the journey you have both pledged to share together today.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Aubree and Jeff, your union has already been created by friendship, respect and love.
Today you've promised each other your undying love and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, it is my joy and pleasure to pronounce you husband and wife.

Jeff, you may kiss your beautiful Bride.

Flowers handed back to Aubree.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is over and the celebration can begin. But first, it is my honor & privilege to present to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife, Jeff & Aubree.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music / DJ James

Bride & Groom exit first, followed by the Bridal Party:

  1. Jack escorting Mina
  2. Corey escorting Kell
  3. Kyle escorting Gina
  4. Steven escorting Kelli

Then parents, families, Reverend & guests.

THE MARRIAGE CEREMONY OF
WENDY
&
MICHAEL

The Ashford Estate
637 Province Line Road, Allentown, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / Ceremonious Strings

Music played while guests are being seated.

PROCESSIONAL Music / Ceremonious Strings

The Reverend, Groom, Best Man (Mark) and Groomsmen enter from side door of barn first and take their places in the line–up. Groomsmen enter in this order:

  1. Sean (joins line–up after escorting Doreen, Mother of the Bride)
  2. Art
  3. Mike
  4. Chris

Groom’s grandmother (Pam) enters with her husband (Joe); they proceed to their seats in front row/right side.

Groom’s parents (Dave & Suzanne) enter; they proceed to their seats in front row/right side.

Bride’s mother (Doreen) enters with GM Sean; they proceed to her seat in the front row/left side. Sean joins the line–up next to between Mark & Art.

Bridesmaids enter in this order:

  1. Michelle (furthest from Bride)
  2. Kate
  3. Steph
  4. Olivia
Maid of Honor (Amy) enters and proceeds to the line–up.

Music changes.

The Bride and her father (John) enter and proceed to front row where Reverend and Groom greet them Reverend asks the following question:

“Who gives this Bride, Wendy, to be married to this Groom, Michael?”

Dad responds “Her mother and I do.” He lifts Wendy’s veil and kisses her then shakes Mike’s hand before taking his seat in the front row/left side next to Doreen.

Flowers handed to Amy.

GREETING Reverend

Welcome! Good afternoon family and friends. We are here to honor a very special couple in their journey of love & marriage. Wendy & Michael, in their respect and love for each other, wish to unite in the bond of marriage and to dedicate themselves to each other’s happiness as husband and wife. Today, their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined as one.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION OF FRIENDS & FAMILY Reverend

On behalf of Wendy & Mike, thank you for joining them. They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day. By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other. And you support their decision to commit themselves to a lifelong relationship.

In marriage, we give ourselves freely and generously into the hands of the one we love, and in doing so, each of us receives the love and trust of the other as our most precious gift. But even as that gift is shared by two people who are in love, it also touches the friends and family members who in various ways support and contribute to the relationship. This is why gathering as a community is such an important part of a wedding celebration.

REMEMBRANCE Reverend

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today. And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment. They are our grandparents, family members and friends, some from the present and some from the past.

We especially remember Wendy’s grandparents, Dorothy, Charles & Muriel and her Uncle Mike, and Mike’s grandparents Phil & Gert. A special seat in the barn is left empty today in honor of their memory.

Although these loved ones are not physically with us, we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT/THANKS TO PARENTS Reverend

Today represents not only the joining of Wendy and Mike but also the joining of their families. Wendy and Mike would like to recognize their parents on this occasion. They offer their deepest gratitude to their parents for the unconditional gifts of love and support that they have continually offered. You have inspired them to become who they are today and they thank you from the bottom of their hearts.

PRESENTATION OF ROSES TO MOTHERS Reverend, Couple & Mothers

As Wendy and Mike come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and honor their families by presenting each of their mother’s with a rose symbolizing their deep love and appreciation for all they have done for them throughout their lives.

Couple presents roses to Mothers.

Among the many things that giving roses symbolizes, perhaps the most important is eternal love.

INTRODUCTION TO WARMING OF THE RINGS Reverend

Wendy & Mike are excited to share their wedding day with you, their family and friends, and thank each of you for making the journey here to be with them. Later on in this ceremony Wendy and Mike will exchange rings. These rings are visible signs of their love and commitment to one another.

During the ceremony they invite all of you to take part in the warming of the rings.
They ask that each guest holds the rings for a moment as they make their way through the barn, warm them with your love and make a silent wish for the couple and their future together.
When these rings are finally placed on Wendy and Mike’s fingers, they will contain in their precious metal, that which is more precious and priceless—your love, hope and pledge of support for their union.

Reverend asks Mark to begin passing the ring dish.

READING # 1 Aunt Trina

Wendy & Mike have chosen family members to be a special part of their ceremony today. The first reading will be given by Wendy’s Aunt Trina and is titled, “This Perfect Moment, An Aunt’s Tribute.”

[Reading to be provided by Trina.]

INVOCATION Reverend

Wendy & Mike, you have chosen this day to stand before these witnesses to take each other as husband and wife. You both know you’ve developed a deep love and respect for each other and have proven this true over the past few years you’ve been together. Deep knowledge of another is not something that can be achieved in a short time and real understanding of the other’s feelings can develop fully only with years of intimacy. This ceremony today symbolizes the intimate sharing of your two lives.

As you have from the beginning of your relationship, you must continue to bond closer together each and every day. You must continue to grow in mutual respect for one another, continue to work at your relationship, and deeply care for one another, not only through the happy times of life but those difficult and hard times, as well.

When you find someone who can completely turn your world around
you share your hopes for the future and dreams that may or may not come true.
He or she builds you up and shows you the things about yourself that make you special.
Colors are brighter, happiness is fuller, memories are fresher, and commitment is stronger.
The thought of this special person brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby.

You open your heart, and experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile; and your only hope and security is in knowing that this person is a part of it.

Wendy and Mike, I know I speak for everyone here when I say we’re happy you found this special person in each other.

READING # 2 Uncle Bill

I’d like to invite Wendy’s Godfather Uncle Bill to share the second reading with us entitled, “All You Need is Love…and a Little More.”

[Reading to be provided by Bill.]

INTRO TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

You are about to make promises to one another. These vows are words representing your intentions. As you live by these vows over the years, investing your time and love, and your commitment to one another, the happy times of your life will become twice as joyous because there will always be someone to share those joys with in marriage.

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Wendy & Mike will exchange their personal vows with each other.

Couple’s vow books will be on table.

Please join hands as you now share your vows with one another.

Mike, please repeat after me.

I, Michael, take you Wendy to be my wedded wife.
To have and to hold from this day forward.
For better, for worse.
For richer, for poorer.
In sickness and in health.
To love and to cherish
all the days of my life.

Wendy, please repeat after me.

I, Wendy take you Michael to be my wedded husband.
To have and to hold from this day forward.
For better, for worse.
For richer, for poorer.
In sickness and in health.
To love and to cherish
all the days of my life.

GIVING & RECEIVING OF THE RINGS Reverend & Couple

And so we come to the presentation of rings by which you symbolize and bind your love.

Reverend asks whichever guest has the rings to hand them to Mark who hands them to Reverend.

The rings, now warmed by those you love the most, will forever show the world you are one, and they will carry with them the eternal love and blessing of your family and friends. Your wedding rings say you have chosen to be bonded, to allow the presence of another human being to enhance who you are. As you wear them through time, they will reflect not only who you are but also the union you are now creating.

Mike, please repeat after me.

Wendy, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion,
and my choice to share
my life and dreams with you.
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
today, tomorrow and forever.

Wendy, please repeat after me.

Mike, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion,
and my choice to share
my life and dreams with you.
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
today, tomorrow and forever.

BLESSING OF THE HANDS Grandma Pam & Joe

Mike’s grandparents, Pamela and Joe will read The Blessing of the Hands. [They wrap the handfasting ribbon around couple’s hands first.]

Blessing of the Hands

These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever.
These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future.
These are the hands that will passionately love you and care for you throughout the years.
These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind and, with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.
These are the hands that will wipe the tears from your eyes; tears of sorrow, and tears of joy.
These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children and help keep your family together as one.
These are the hands that will give you strength when you struggle and support and encouragement to chase down your dreams.
And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Before I pronounce you husband and wife, there is one final moment I want you to share.

Your wedding day is one that seems to fly. A day filled with emotions, family, friends, dances. Many people remember how fleeting their own wedding day was. In fact, it may seem to you that this ceremony happened in the blink of an eye.

So join hands and I want you to take a few seconds to look into each other’s eyes again. Think about the happiness that you’re feeling in this moment and in this beautiful place. Let that feeling register in your mind and your heart.

Then, imagine your life together in twenty years.
Where you might be?
What you might be doing?
We all know that our visions of the future are not identical, but always complementary.

Finally, as John Lennon once said: “A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together, that is reality.”

And for Wendy and Mike, that reality starts now.

You have shared this moment and these promises with your family and friends, as a symbol of deeply loving each other. By the act of joining hands and exchanging rings, you take to yourself the relation of husband and wife.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, it is truly my joy and pleasure to pronounce you husband and wife.

Mike, you may kiss your beautiful Bride.

Flowers handed back to Wendy.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is over and the celebration can begin.
But first, it is my privilege to present to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife – Mr. & Mrs. Michael & Wendy.

RECESSIONAL Music / Ceremonious Strings

Wendy & Mike exit first, followed by bridal party in this order:

  1. Mark escorting Amy
  2. Sean escorting Olivia
  3. Art escorting Steph
  4. Mike escorting Kate
  5. Chris escorting Michelle

Then, Parents/Grandmother, Reverend and guests.

THE MARRIAGE CEREMONY OF
BEVERLY
&
SCOTT

Holly Hedge Estate
6987 Upper York Rd, New Hope, PA
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / Strings

Music played while guests are seated.

PROCESSIONAL Music / Strings

The Reverend enters and proceeds to front of room.

Groomsmen and Bridesmaids will all sit in chairs placed in front of railings.

Music starts as Groomsmen walk down the stairs. Furthest GM from Scott will be first:

  1. Anthony (furthest from Scott)
  2. Chris
  3. Ryan
  4. Nick
  5. Lee (Best Man)
  6. Groom

Scott’s grandmothers enter: Grandma Renee with her boyfriend, Joe, and Grandma Ann with Scott’s sister, Danielle. They take their seats in first or second row, right side.

Scott’s Parents (Scott & Nicole) enter and take seats in front row/right side.

Bride’s Mother (Doris) enters with Patricia (Bev’s half-sister); they take their seats in front row/left side.

The Bridesmaids enter in the following reverse order and take places in the line-up:

  1. Stephanie (Jr. BM/flower girl; she’ll be furthest from Bride)
  2. Kate
  3. Sarah
  4. Kaete

The Maid of Honor (Alyssa) enters and takes her place in line-up.

Music changes.

Reverend: Please stand.

Bride enters, escorted by her Father (Arthur) and proceeds to front row where Reverend and Groom greet them. Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this Bride — Beverly — to be married to this Groom — Scott?

Dad responds: “I do.” He kisses Bev’s hand or cheek; shakes Scott’s hand or gives him a hug, then takes his seat in front row/right side next to Doris.

Flowers handed to Alyssa and couple is brought together for start of ceremony.

GREETING Reverend

Good afternoon family and friends.
Today we are here to honor a very special couple in their journey of love & marriage.
Beverly and Scott in their respect and love for each other, wish to unite in the bond of marriage and to dedicate themselves to each other’s happiness as friends, life-mates, and partners.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION OF FRIENDS/FAMILY & REMEMBRANCE Reverend

On behalf of Beverly and Scott, welcome and thank you for joining them.
They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day.
Bev and Scott will long remember this time of celebration, and whether your trip here was somewhat local or you traveled a long distance from places around the globe such as Switzerland, Canada, Florida, Massachusetts, California, or Long Island, they are thankful that all of you their family and friends are here to share in their happiness.

We also know that some special loved ones are not with us here today. Some of them from the present and some from the past, and yet, we remember them and invoke their memory and spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this occasion.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT/THANKS TO PARENTS Reverend

Beverly and Scott would especially like to recognize their families and parents on this occasion. And offer their deepest gratitude for the unconditional gifts of love and support that they have continually offered. You have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you from the bottom of their hearts. Without you, this day would not be possible.

PRESENTATION OF ROSES TO MOTHERS Reverend, Couple & Mothers

As Beverly and Scott come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and thank their mothers, Doris and Nicole, for always being there throughout their years and for all that they have done in bringing them to this incredible moment.

At this time they would like to present a token of their love to their Mothers.

Couple presents roses to Mothers.

Among the many things that giving roses symbolizes, perhaps the most important is eternal love.

Bev and Scott take their places opposite each other for the 7 steps.

SEVEN STEPS (SAPTHA PATHI) Reverend

Beverly and Scott have incorporated wedding customs from around the world into their ceremony. The first comes from Hindu traditions and is called Saptha Pathi or Seven Steps. This is the most important part of the Hindu marriage ceremony and spells out the couple’s promises to each other.

Only when the couple walks seven steps together is the marriage complete. The belief is that when one walks 7 steps with another, one becomes the other’s friend and companion and that they pledge to observe their vows and always remain together as inseparable.

  1. Let us take the 1st step to provide for our household a nourishing and pure diet, avoiding those foods injurious to health living.
  2. Let us take the 2nd step to develop physical, mental, and spiritual powers
  3. Let us take the 3rd step to increase our wealth by righteous means and proper use.
  4. Let us take the 4th step to acquire knowledge, happiness, and harmony by mutual love and trust.
  5. Let us take the 5th step so that we are blessed with strong, virtuous, and heroic children.
  6. Let us take the 6th step for self-restraint and longevity.
  7. Finally Let us take the 7th step and be true companions and remain lifelong partners by this wedlock.

BUDDHIST MARRIAGE HOMILY Reverend

Beverly & Scott, marriage is the beginning of a new life.
The Buddhists believe that the union of this man and this woman has not come about accidentally but was foreordained. This tie can therefore not be broken or resolved.
In the future, happy occasions will come as surely as the morning. Difficult times will come as surely as the night. When things go joyously and when things go badly, meditate in the manner of compassion. To say the words love and compassion is easy.
But to accept that love and compassion are built upon patience and perseverance is not as, or so, easy.

UNITY CANDLE CEREMONY Reverend & Couple

Music in background.

Marriage brings together two people in a unique relationship. In their togetherness, Beverly & Scott will share many experiences as if they were one. But, each will retain his or her own identity.

Ask couple to move to either side of the unity candle table.

Beverly & Scott, the two individual taper candles symbolize your individual spirits, memories, hopes and dreams — a single light that shines from within each of you.

(Pause while couple lights taper candles.)

Your individual candles signify the importance of allowing each other the freedom to change and grow as individuals, while developing your mutual spirit as time goes.

The center candle represents a symbol of your unity, the one radiant light of eternity that shines from within you, the light that you share with each other, and your family, friends and the world.
It is the strength and beauty you will bring to one another, as husband and wife, as one in spirit.

Please take your individual candle and together light the center unity candle.

Pause while couple lights center unity candle.

This unity flame burns brighter than each flame separately, it depicts Beverly & Scott’s belief that they can, together, become greater than each could alone.
But they always remain two lights, always separate people who bring their uniqueness and love to this union.

Ask couple to return to their places.

CROWNING CEREMONY Reverend & Couple

This marriage is a bringing together of two people, of two families, and different cultures.
Beverly & Scott have chosen to honor Scott’s Armenian heritage by including the Orthodox Crowning ceremony and for Beverly’s love of celebrating meaning & traditions, with the Jewish Breaking of the Glass at the end of the ceremony.

In a traditional Armenian wedding ceremony, the bride and groom are crowned.
The two crowns are linked together with a single length of ribbon, symbolizing the joining of two souls and the creation of a new household.
It is a symbol of combining two people as one.

Lee and Alyssa place the crowns on Bride & Groom. Alyssa ties the ribbon.

After the wedding, the crowns are set aside in a safe place, representing the couple’s commitment.
Crowns are intended to be kept for life, forming eternal memories for the bride and the groom.

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING/RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please join hands and look into each other’s eyes as you pledge your love & commitment to one another.

Scott to Bev:

Scott, do you take Beverly to be your wife, to be your partner in marriage and life;
to love her and honor her; to be honest and faithful to her;
and to stand by Beverly all the days of your life?

Scott responds: I do.

Bev to Scott:

Beverly, do you take Scott, to be your husband, to be a partner in marriage and in life;
to love him and honor him; to be honest and faithful to him;
and to stand by Scott all the days of your life?

Beverly responds: I do.

A wedding ceremony is the beginning of a new future for the couple being married — representing their hopes and dreams of what is possible as they build their lives together.
But it is also deeply tied to what has come before — their families, friends, individual lives.
In recognition of the importance of making the past part of their future,
Bev and Scott will be exchanging rings that have been handed down to them from their beloved grandparents. Bev’s ring belonged to her grandmother Anna and Scott’s has been passed down from his grandfather Arthur.

Rings in box on table.

Scott, please repeat after me:

Bev, I give you this ring with the promise
that no matter what the world brings to us
I will be by your side.

Beverly, please repeat after me:

Scott, I give you this ring
with the promise of love, partnership, and compromise
for all our days to come.

CEREMONIAL WALK Reverend & Couple

Now that the bride and groom have been adorned with the ceremonial wedding crowns,
and have exchanged their vows and rings, the Groom will remove them.

The crowns have several rich symbolisms. They express the creation of a new household, which the couple is charged to rule wisely and with full responsibility to each other.

The crowns also represent martyrdom, sacrifice and steadfast devotion. In marriage, the couple must be devoted to always building up the marriage, and to commit themselves as responsible parents to any future children, their families and friends.

Crowns removed by Scott.

REVEREND’S BEST WISHES Reverend

For a marriage to be successful, you must each be loyal to the other, stand firm in your defense of each other and be supportive of one another’s life goals and dreams. It is a solemn, binding, yet challenging relationship.

The two of you are now joined body, heart and soul.
Wherever you go, may you always return to one another in your togetherness.
May you two find in each other the love for which all souls long.
May you grow in understanding and in compassion. And, may your home be such a place of sanctuary that all who visit will find there a friend.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE & BREAKING OF THE GLASS Reverend

The breaking of the glass symbolizes the breaking down of barriers
between people of different cultures and faiths.
It also reminds us, that love, like glass, is fragile and must be protected.
It is the end of one era and the beginning of another,
as the joining of the bride and groom and their families become one.
This broken glass is kept as a keepsake, symbolizing the fragility of the relationship
and serving as a reminder that the relationship must be treated with special care.
In a moment, Scott will break the glass signifying the end of the ceremony and the time for celebration.
When he does, everyone will shout “Mazel Tov” for their good fortune.

Reverend places covered glass on the floor.

Beverly & Scott, by your words today in this ceremony you have promised each other your undying love and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other.

Therefore, it is truly my joy and pleasure to declare you husband and wife.
Scott, you may kiss your beautiful bride.

Kiss and applause.

As Scott breaks the glass, please shout: Mazel Tov.

Scott steps on the glass w/right foot and breaks it.

Everyone: Mazel Tov.

Bridal Party rings their bells.

Flowers handed back to Beverly.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Friends & family, the ceremony is over, the celebration can begin.
Bev & Scott will be taking photos with their families and the Bridal Party but invite you to head directly outside to the cocktail hour where they’ll join you shortly.

But first, it is my privilege to present to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife, Mr. & Mrs. Scott and Beverly.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music / Strings

Couple exits followed by bridal party:

  1. Lee & Alyssa
  2. Nick & Kaete
  3. Ryan & Sarah
  4. Chris & Kate
  5. Anthony & Stephanie

Parents/Family follow behind and then the Reverend.

THE WEDDING CEREMONY OF
CHRISTINA
&
JASON

The Inn @ Millrace Pond
Hope Township, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / Acoustic Guitar

Music played while guests are seated.

PROCESSIONAL Music / Acoustic Guitar

The Reverend, Groom, Best Man (Collin) and Groomsmen enter and take places in line-up. Groomsmen are in this order:

  1. Adam
  2. Matt
  3. Eric
  4. Nick (furthest from Jason)

Groom's father (Robert) and grandmother (Dolores) enter and proceed to their seats in the front row/right side.

Groom's mother (Beverly) and husband (Robert) enter and proceed to their seats in the front row/right side.

Bride's mother (LuAnn) and grandfather (Vincent) enter and proceed to their seats in the front row/left side.

Bridesmaids enter in this order and proceed to their places in the line-up.

  1. Elise
  2. Alexandra
  3. Madelyn (furthest from Christina)

The Matron of Honor (Alicia) enters and takes her place in line-up.

Music changes.

Reverend: Please stand.

The Bride (Christina) enters, escorted by her father (Robert); they proceed to the front row where Reverend and Groom greet them.

The following question is asked by Reverend:

Who gives this bride-Christina-to be married to this groom-Jason?

Dad responds "I do." He kisses Christina and shakes Jason's hand before taking his seat in the front row/left side.

Flowers handed to Alicia.

Couple is brought together for the start of the ceremony.

GREETING Reverend

Good afternoon family and friends. Welcome to the beautiful Inn at Millrace Pond!
We are here to honor a very special couple in their journey of love & marriage.
Today, Christina and Jason demonstrate their devotion to each other by dedicating themselves to a life together. And they show their respect for each other by setting forth to honor their vows.
Today, their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined as one.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION & REMEMBRANCE Reverend

Christina & Jason, this afternoon you are surrounded by your family and friends,
All of whom have gathered to witness and share in the joy of this occasion.
On behalf of Christina and Jason, thank you for joining them.
They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day.
By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in one another.
For Christina and Jason, this celebration means that they are going to continue counting on one another, and treating one another with care. That they are going to continue to share their lives with each other as partners and friends, and to go on building their future together.

In marriage, we give ourselves freely and generously into the hands of the one we love, and in doing so, each of us receives the love and trust of the other as our most precious gift.
But even as the gift is shared by two people who are in love, it also touches the friends and family members who in various ways support and contribute to the relationship.
This is why gathering as a community is such an important part of a wedding celebration.
You are their families and friends, and whether your trip here was local or you traveled a long distance, they thank each of you for making the journey here to be with them.

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today. And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment. They are our grandparents, family members and friends and we will always remember them. Though not physically with us, we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit. The memories of these beautiful people live on in our hearts today and always.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT/THANKS TO PARENTS Reverend

As Christina & Jason come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and thank their parents for the endless love and support that they have given them throughout the years, and for all they have done in bringing them to this special moment. Your unconditional gifts of love and support have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you, from the bottom of their hearts.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Christina and Jason, you have chosen this day to stand before these witnesses to take each other as husband and wife. You both know you've developed a deep love and respect for each other and have proven this true over the past 4 years you've been together. Deep knowledge of another is not something that can be achieved in a short time and real understanding of the other's feelings can develop fully only with years of intimacy. This ceremony today symbolizes the intimate sharing of your two lives.

As you have from the beginning of your relationship, you must continue to bond closer together each and every day. You must continue to grow in mutual respect for one another, continue to work at your relationship, and deeply care for one another, not only through the happy times of life but those difficult and hard times.

When you find someone who can completely turn your world around
you share your hopes for the future and dreams that may or may not come true.
He or she builds you up and shows you the things about yourself that make you special.
There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. Colors are brighter, happiness is fuller, memories are fresher, and commitment is stronger.
The thought of this special person brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there's no need for continuous conversation, but you find you're quite content in just having them nearby.

You open your heart, and experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile; and your only hope and security is in knowing that this person is a part of it.

Christina and Jason, I know I speak for everyone here when I say we're happy you found this special person in each other.

READING Colin & Alicia

Christina and Jason have invited Colin and Alicia to share a poignant and heartfelt reading with us by Robert Fulghum called "Union."

You have known each other from the first glance of acquaintance to this point of commitment. At some point, you decided to marry. From that moment of yes to this moment of yes, indeed, you have been making promises and agreements in an informal way. All those conversations that were held riding in a car or over a meal or during long walks - all those sentences that began with "When we're married" and continued with "I will and you will and we will" — those late night talks that included "someday" and "somehow" and "maybe" — and all those promises that are unspoken matters of the heart. All these common things, and more, are the real process of a wedding.

The symbolic vows that you are about to make are a way of saying to one another, "You know all those things we've promised and hoped and dreamed — well, I meant it all, every word." Look at one another and remember this moment in time. Before this moment you have been many things to one another — acquaintance, friend, companion, lover, dancing partner, and even teacher, for you have learned much from one another in these last few years. Now you shall say a few words that take you across a threshold of life, and things will never quite be the same between you. For after these vows, you shall say to the world, this is my husband, this is my wife.

WEDDING VOWS Reverend

Marriage is a commitment to life, the best that two people can find and bring out in each other. It offers opportunities for sharing and growth that no other relationship can equal. It understands and forgives the mistakes life is unable to avoid and encourages new experiences and growth. Marriage is a promise made in the hearts of two people that takes a lifetime to fulfill.

You will now make that promise by exchanging your vows with each other.

Please join hands and look into each other's eyes as you pledge your love to one another:

Jason, please repeat after me.

Christina, today I take you to be my wife,
my partner in marriage and in life,
I promise to love and to honor you,
to be honest and faithful to you,
to stand by you and care for you,
all the days of my life.

Christina, please repeat after me.

Jason, today I take you to be my husband,
my partner in marriage and in life,
I promise to love and to honor you,
to be honest and faithful to you,
to stand by you and care for you,
all the days of my life.

INTRODUCTION TO RING VOWS Reverend

For as long as people have been getting married, they have taken symbols of remembrance along the way to frequently stir the sincerity of what they, as partners, always believed in and what they thought protected their relationship and the best qualities therein.

Collin, may I have the rings please?

(Rings handed to Reverend by Best Man.)

Wedding rings are made of precious metals that symbolize a love that is pure and enduring. They are made of rare gems that symbolize a love that is priceless and irreplaceable. They are made of a perfect circle that symbolizes a love that is permanent and everlasting.

As often as you look upon these rings, may you be reminded of this moment and the love that you are promising to one another.

EXCHANGE OF RING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Jason, please repeat after me:

Christina, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion
and my choice to share
my life and dreams with you.
I give you this ring,
with my pledge to love you
today, tomorrow, and forever.

Christina, please repeat after me:

Jason, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion
and my choice to share
my life and dreams with you.
I give you this ring,
with my pledge to love you
today, tomorrow, and forever.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

The two of you are now joined in one unbroken circle. Wherever you go, may you always return to one another in your togetherness. May you two find in each other the love for which all souls long.

Before I declare you husband and wife, I want to wish you much love and happiness as you begin this new journey together. Remember to keep lots of laughter in your life and love will never be far behind.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Christina and Jason, your union has already been created by friendship, respect and love.

Today you've promised each other your undying love and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, it is my joy and pleasure to declare that you are husband and wife.

Jason, you may kiss your beautiful bride.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE/SAWING THE LOG Reverend

Friends and family, the ceremony is over so let the celebration begin!

But before that can happen, there is an old German wedding custom, unfamiliar to most of us unless you're German, or more specially, Bavarian. This is the tradition of cutting a log together and represents the first obstacle that the couple must overcome in their marriage.

Couple moves to the log.

Immediately after the ceremony, the couple has to saw a log in half, working together to "overcome the obstacle" by sawing through the log. Using a large saw, the couple demonstrates their teamwork to friends and family. It symbolizes that by working together they can accomplish difficult tasks and it also serves as a reminder when the couple faces, and must overcome, the difficulties that inevitably arise in a marriage.

Couple cuts the log.

Now that they've accomplished this first task as a married couple, it is my honor and privilege to present to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife, Jason and Christina!

Flowers handed back to Christina.

RECESSIONAL Music / Acoustic Guitar

Bride & Groom exit first, followed by bridal party:

  1. Collin escorting Alicia
  2. Adam escorting Elise
  3. Matt escorting Alexandra
  4. Eric and Nick escorting Madelyn

Parents/Family follow behind, then Reverend and guests.

THE WEDDING CEREMONY OF
NICOLE
&
MICHAEL

The Grain House
225 U.S. 202, Basking Ridge, NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE Music / DJ Chuck Russo

Music played while guests are seated. Grandparents are pre-seated prior to start of ceremony.

PROCESSIONAL Music / DJ Chuck Russo

The Reverend and groom enter and take places in line-up.

Groom's father (Andy) enters with his wife (Diana); they take seats on the right side.

Groom's mother (Sharon) enters with Mike's Uncle George; they takes seats on the right side.

Bride's parents (Wayne & Donna) enter; she takes her seat in the front row left side and Wayne returns to escort Bride.

The Bridesmaids and Groomsmen enter in this order and take their places in the line-up:

  1. Mark and Molly (furthest)
  2. Matt and Marisa
  3. Marek and Deanna
  4. Mike P. and Jenn
  5. Derek and Michelle

Music changes.

Reverend: Please stand.

Bride enters, escorted by her father (Wayne) and proceeds to front row where Reverend, Groom greet them. Bride's mother (Donna) stands for question. The following question is asked by the Reverend:

Who gives this bride, Nicole, to be married to this groom, Michael?

Parents respond: "We do." Wayne lifts Nicole's veil and both parents kiss her. Wayne shakes Michael's hand and Michael kisses Donna.

Flowers handed to Michelle and couple is brought together for the start of the ceremony.

GREETING Reverend

Good afternoon, family and friends.
Welcome to the beautiful Grain House at the Olde Mill Inn!
We have come here today to celebrate the marriage of Nicole and Michael.
Marriage is a bond to be entered into only after considerable thought and reflection.
By making this commitment today, Nicole and Michael's relationship
will become stronger, better, and deeper.
Today, they demonstrate their devotion to each other by dedicating themselves to a life together.
And they show their respect for each other by setting forth to honor their vows.
Today, their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined as one.

OPENING PRAYER Reverend

Let us pray:

God, grant that the love which unites Nicole and Michael may grow in abiding happiness.
May their relationship continue to grow in the years to come.
May there be peace in their home, quietness and confidence in their hearts.
And whatever changes time may bring, let today's wedding ceremony remain as a treasured memory and a guide to life for Nicole and Michael.

Amen.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION OF FRIENDS & FAMILIES/REMEMBERANCE Reverend

On behalf of Nicole and Michael, thank you for joining them today.
They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day.
They will long remember this time of celebration, and are thankful that all of you, their family and friends, are here to share in their happiness.
By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other.

We also know that some very special loved ones are not with us here today.
And yet, we remember them still and invoke their memory and their spirit to share in the happiness and joy of this moment...
The invocation of their names brings fond and cherished memories of a time past, yet ever present in our minds...and ever cherished in our hearts...

Especially remembered are: Nicole's Popi Thomas, Grandma & Grandpa, Madeleine & Dominick, Aunt Sis, and Uncle Robert; And, of course, Mike's beloved Jack Russell Terrier, Speckles (a/k/a Brother Spur).

We will remember them always and we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF PARENTS/PRESENTATION OF ROSES TO MOTHERS Reverend & Couple

As Nicole and Michael come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and thank their parents & families for the endless love and support that they have given them throughout their years and for all that they have done in bringing them to this incredible moment.
You have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you, from the bottom of their hearts. Without you, this day would not be possible.

At this time they would like to present a token of their love to some incredible women: their Mothers, Donna and Sharon, Mike's stepmother, Diana, their grandmothers, Helen and Lorraine and Nicole's Godmother, her Aunt Pat.

(Couple presents roses)

Among the many things that giving roses symbolizes, perhaps the most important is eternal love.

PERSONAL LOVE STORY Reverend

I'd like to now share with you what led to this very special day... And, in fairness to Nicole, the story was written from her groom's perspective.

On a fall night, when AOL Instant Messenger was still all the rave, Nicole took a dare from her sister, Michelle, and sent an IM to Michael asking for a ride home from TCNJ, where they were attending college, the following day. Confirming with his brother, Derek, that this was indeed a good idea, Michael IM'd Nicole to say it wouldn't be a problem and he could bring her home. That next day, Nicole discovered early on how great a navigator Michael was, since it only took him three and a half trips up and down the parking garage to find the black dragon a/ka/ Mike's old car, may it rest in peace. Nevertheless, Michael did make it to Nicole's house, and all was well.

The holiday break came and went, and Michael decided to ask Nicole if she'd like to join him for a few games at Curtis Lanes. Nicole could never pass up on a challenge of any sort whether it be bowling or just simply a Jellybean Guessing Contest. So, no surprise, the answer was "yes".

Michael put on his fresh new jeans that Derek had given him as part of his new wardrobe, and he was off to bowl with Nicole. The games were, well, close-ish and it would be years until Michael found out just how mad Nicole was that she did not walk away victorious.

Later that night, on their walk back to T-Dubbs, Nicole took to the frozen college ground and began to show off her triple axel. Michael was not used to hanging out with a girl with such spunk and spontaneity… well he wasn't really used to hanging out with girls in general… but this was "new jeans Mike," he thought to himself. They arrived back at Nicole's dorm with a pint each of Ben and Jerry's only to find out that there was a TCNJ rager about to go down, and Nicole's roommate and friends would be in attendance. One by one, young, beautiful freshman girls entered Nicole's dorm room, as if Nicole wasn't young and beautiful enough. Suddenly, "new jeans Mike" quickly turned back into "swooshy pants Mike."

Now some things are very difficult to explain, like quantum physics, but it's nearly impossible to explain what went through Michael's head that made him choose studying for a test two weeks away over partying with Ben, Jerry and a roomful of college cuties that night.

After that recap, and Mike choosing studying over time with Nicole, some of you could be wondering how it is that they are even standing before us today, moments away from marriage, but their quirks - which all of your are probably very aware of and used to - proved to be a force to be reckoned with when it came to a loving relationship.

Seven sweet 16 anniversaries later, and three trips to the ER behind them, Nicole and Michael know they are not attached at the hip, and certainly not the shoulder, but most definitely at the heart.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Nicole and Michael, you both know you have developed a deep love and respect for each other and have already proven this is true over the past seven years of your relationship.
But it never hurts to be reminded of why two people fell in love in the first place and continue to fall in love with each other again and again.
As you walk through life together, remember that you are unique and different from one another. Give your love openly and honestly.
Do not try to change each other, it is your differences that brought you together.

Always accept and respect what the other has to say.
Even if you do not agree, take time to enjoy each day.
And remember that each day is a new beginning.
In marriage, walk the path together, side by side, whenever possible.
Hold each other when it is cold,
and if the air becomes too close, make a little space so each can breathe.
When the path is narrow, pick one to go first.
Be willing to follow and never be afraid to lead.
Trust your partner and trust yourself - for a marriage is a journey that leads to greater love.
This real love says you are stronger together than when you are apart.

READING #1 Michelle

Nicole and Michael have asked her sister, Michelle to share a reading with us. It's an "Excerpt from The Bridge Across Forever" by Richard Bach.

Excerpt from The Bridge Across Forever
Richard Bach

A soul mate is someone who has locks that fit our keys, and keys to fit our locks.
When we feel safe enough to open the locks,
our truest selves step out and we can be completely and honestly who we are;
we can be loved for who we are and not for who we're pretending to be.
Each unveils the best part of the other.
No matter what else goes wrong around us, with that one person we're safe in our own paradise.
Our soul mate is someone who shares our deepest longings, our sense of direction.
When we're two balloons, and together our direction is up, chances are we've found the right person.
Our soul mate is the one who makes life come to life.

INTRO TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

You are about to exchange your vows.
These vows are an expression of the promises you have chosen to make to each other.
Marriage is the uniting of two people and a journey towards the unity of two hearts. The vows you share will thrive on the love that you have for each other
and your marriage will grow deeper as each of you grows older.

WEDDING VOWS Reverend/Couple

Please join hands and repeat after me your wedding vows.

Michael to Nicole:

Nicole, I take you to be my best friend,
My faithful partner, and my one true love.
I promise to encourage and inspire you
and to love you truly
through good times and bad.
I will forever be there to laugh with you,
to lift you up when you are down
and to love you unconditionally through all of our adventures in life together.

Nicole to Michael:

Michael, I take you to be my best friend,
My faithful partner, and my one true love.
I promise to encourage and inspire you
and to love you truly
through good times and bad.
I will forever be there to laugh with you,
to lift you up when you are down
and to love you unconditionally
through all of our adventures in life together.

TREE PLANTING CEREMONY Reverend/Couple

Nicole and Michael will now take part in a Tree Planting Ceremony, to symbolize the roots of their relationship, and the continued growth of their love, as they become part of each other's family today.

Love is the essence of human experience and emotion. It is the root of all and everything we, as humans, do. Love richens our experience, and fills our lives with meaning. It gives us a firm base from which to grow, to learn, and change.

Ask couple to take their carafes and pour the soil.

Let your relationship and your love for each other be like this tree. Let it grow tall and strong.
Let it stand tall during the harsh winds and rains and storms, and come through unscathed.
Like a tree, your marriage must be resilient. It must weather the challenges of daily life and the passage of time. And just like the tree you'll be planting, marriage requires constant nurturing and nourishment.

READING #2 Derek

Mike's brother, Derek, will now read the Apache Marriage Blessing.

Apache Marriage Blessing

Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will be shelter for the other.
Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there will be no loneliness, for each of you will be companion to the other.
Now you are two persons, but there is only one life before you.
May beauty surround you both in the journey ahead and through all the years.
May happiness be your companion and your days together be good and long upon the earth.

INTRO TO RING VOWS Reverend

The circle is the embodiment of the infinite, of timelessness; representing wholeness and homecoming; completion with renewal. These wedding rings also symbolize the unbroken circle of love, signifying to all your union in marriage.

As often as either of you look upon these rings you are about to exchange, may you be reminded of this moment and the love that you have promised to one another.

Mike choose this line from a favorite movie. Tell him later if you know the name of the movie.

Derek & Mike, "My dear best men, let me lift these heavy burdens and bestow them to their rightful bearers."

Best Men hand rings to Reverend.

GIVING & RECEIVING OF THE RINGS Reverend & Couple

Michael, please repeat after me.

Nicole, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion,
and my choice to share
my life and dreams with you.
With all that I am
and all that I have,
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
all the days of my life.

Nicole, please repeat after me.

Michael, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion,
and my choice to share
my life and dreams with you.
With all that I am
and all that I have, I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
all the days of my life.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

Nicole and Michael, before I declare you husband and wife,
I want to wish you both much love and happiness as you begin your new journey together.
Remember to keep lots of laughter in your life and love will never be far behind.

May all that you are, always be in love.
May all that is love, always be in you.
May your love be as beautiful on each day you share, as it is on this day of celebration.
And may each day you share be as precious to you
as the day you first fell in love more than 7 years ago.
May you always see and encourage the best in each other.
May the challenges life brings your way make your marriage even stronger,
and may you always be each other's best friend and greatest love

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Nicole and Michael, what you have said before this gathering of family and friends, let it be true and valid for the rest of your lives.

Before these witnesses, you have promised each other your undying love and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, and by virtue of the authority vested in me, it is truly my joy and pleasure to pronounce you husband and wife.

Michael, you may kiss your beautiful bride.

(Kiss and applause) Flowers handed back to Nicole.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

It gives me great pleasure to introduce to you, for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife, Mr. and Mrs. Michael and Nicole.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL Music / DJ Chuck Russo

Couple exits down the aisle followed by the bridal party:

  1. Derek and Michelle
  2. Mike P. and Jenn
  3. Marek and Deanna
  4. Matt and Marisa
  5. Mark and Molly

Parents/Family follow behind, then Reverend and guests.

THE MARRIAGE CEREMONY OF
KATIE
&
CHRIS

Allaire Chapel
Wall Twp., NJ
Richard Cash, Officiant

PRELUDE DJ / Nick

Music played while guests are seated.

Sarah and Thomas stand on either side of front door to chapel handing a wishing rock to each guest as they enter.

PROCESSIONAL DJ / Nick

Reverend, Groom, Best Man (Jacob) enter and proceed to front. Jacob returns to back of chapel to enter with Owen.

Katie's grandmother (Gwen) enters with her son (William); they proceed to their seats in front row/right side.

Groom's mother (Marge) enters with Chris's brother (Tony); they proceed to their seats in the front row/left side.

Groom's father & his wife (Rick & Edie) enter and proceed to their seats in the front row/left side.

Bride's mother (Janice) enters with her nephew (Will); they proceed to their seats in the front row/right side.

Bride's sister (Evie) enters with godson (Seamus); they proceed to their seats in front row/right side.

Bride's sister (Lara) enters with her son (Brayden); they proceed to their seats in front row/right side.

Couples sons (Jacob & Owen) enter and proceed to front; Owen will sit with Liz; Jacob will join line-up next to Chris.

Reverend to guests: Please stand.

Bride enters with her father (Bob); they proceed to front row where Reverend and Groom greet them for passing of the Bride.

Processional song will play to the end when Reverend asks the following question:

Who gives this Bride, Katie, to be married to this Groom, Christopher?

Dad responds “I do.”

He kisses Katie and shakes Chris's hand, then take his seat in front row/right side next to Janice.

Flowers handed to Lara (sitting in front row).

Couple is brought together for the start of ceremony.

WELCOME Reverend

Good morning family and friends. Welcome to the historic Allaire Chapel.
We have come here today to celebrate the marriage of Katie & Chris.
By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other.
And you support their decision to commit themselves to a lifelong relationship.
Today, their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined together as one.

OPENING PRAYER Reverend

Let us pray.

Dear God, Thank you for this joyous day. Thank you for your light that has entered our life. Thank you for all your miracles and blessings. Please bless this union. Help Katie and Chris find the perfect place in this world for their love flourish. Let the radiant light of their love shine on all those around them. May their sons, Jacob and Owen, be blessed.

God, bless them with the inner gifts of trust, compassion, forgiveness and truth that they may live and grow together in love and peace.

Amen.

Please be seated.

RECOGNITION OF FRIENDS/FAMILIES & REMEMBRANCE Reverend

Katie and Chris, today you are surrounded by your family and friends,
all of whom have gathered to witness and share in the joy of this occasion.
On behalf of Katie and Chris, thank you for joining them.
They will long remember this time of celebration, and whether your trip here was local or you traveled a long distance, they thank each of you, for being here to share in their happiness.

As we celebrate this wedding today, Katie and Chris would also like to honor the memory of those that could not be with them this morning. They are our grandparents, family members and friends.

We especially remember Chris's Uncle Bill and Katie's beloved brother, Eric.

We will always remember them and we know that they are celebrating with us in spirit. The memories of these beautiful people live on in our hearts today and always.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT/THANKS TO PARENTS Reverend

As Katie and Chris come before us to be married, they wish to acknowledge and thank their Parents.

(Katie and Chris turn to parents on each side to acknowledge them.)

Your unconditional gifts of love have inspired them to become who they are today, and they thank you, from the bottom of their hearts. Without you, this day would not be possible.

PRESENTATION OF ROSES TO MOTHERS Reverend & Couple

Katie & Chris wish to specifically acknowledge and thank 3 very special women, their mothers, Marge, Edie & Janice, for always being there throughout the years and for all that they have done in bringing them to this incredible moment. At this time they would like to present a token of their love to their mothers.

(Jacob will get the roses from the table and give them to couple to present to the mothers)

Among the many things that giving roses symbolizes, perhaps the most important is eternal love.

RECOGNITION OF JACOB & OWEN Reverend

Most often we think of marriage as the joining of two people to be wife and husband.
In reality, marriage is often much more than that. For Katie & Chris, their marriage also includes two other very special people - their children.

As part of the family nature of marriage, Katie & Chris would like to recognize their sons Jacob & Owen, and the very important role that they play in this relationship celebrated today.

WORDS ABOUT MARRIAGE Reverend

Katie and Chris, you both know you've developed a deep love and respect for each other over the years you've been together. The relationship you are entering into today as a wedded couple is truly one of life's most important relationships. It is a gift, given to bring comfort when there is sorrow, peace when there is restlessness, laughter when there is unhappiness and love when it is shared.

Love makes burdens lighter because you divide them. It makes joys more intense because you share them. It makes you stronger so you can become involved with life in ways you dare not risk alone. Real love says you are stronger together than when you are apart. You have proven this true, not only through your dedication and loyalty to each other, but also to the incredibly loving family that you, Jacob and Owen are today.

READING Lara

Katie & Chris have asked her sister, Lara, to share the following reading with us called “Foundations of Marriage” by Regina Hill.

Foundations of Marriage
Regina Hill

Love, trust, and forgiveness are the foundations of marriage.
In marriage, many days will bring happiness, while other days may be sad.
But together, two hearts can overcome everything.

In marriage, all of the moments won't be exciting or romantic,
and sometimes worries and anxiety will be overwhelming.
But together, two hearts that accept will find comfort together.

Recollections of past joys, pains, and shared feelings
will be the glue that holds everything together,
during even the worst and most insecure moments.

Reaching out to each other as a friend,
and becoming the confidant and companion that the other one needs,
is the true magic and beauty of any two people together.

It's inspiring in each other a dream or a feeling,
and having faith in each other and not giving up - even when all the odds say to quit.

It's allowing each other to be vulnerable, to be himself or herself,
even when the opinions or thoughts aren't in total agreement
or exactly what you'd like them to be.

It's getting involved and showing interest in each other,
really listening and being available, the way any best friend should be.

Exactly three things need to be remembered in a marriage if it is to be a mutual bond of sharing, caring, and loving throughout life: love, trust, and forgiveness.

INTRODUCTION TO WEDDING VOWS Reverend

You are about to exchange your vows. These vows are an expression of the promises you have chosen to make to each other. Marriage is the uniting of two people and a journey towards the unity of two hearts. The vows you share will thrive on the love that you have for each other and your marriage will grow deeper as each of you grows older.
As you journey through life together, may you continue to trust each other, laugh together and speak often to one another. And may your lives together be filled with joy, whether in times of peace or chaos, trouble or good fortune.

EXCHANGE OF WEDDING VOWS Reverend & Couple

Please look into each other's eyes as you share your vows by repeating after me.

Chris to Katie:

Katie, I stand before you
because you have won my heart through your graciousness.
You are my life partner,
loving mother to our children Jacob and Owen
and the one I pledge my life and love to.
From this day forward,
I promise to love, respect, and honor you.
I will listen to you,
and be open and honest with you.
I will be your trusted partner
and stand by you through good times and bad.
I promise this now
and for all the days of my life.

Katie to Chris:

Chris, I stand before you
because you have won my heart through your graciousness.
You are my life partner,
loving father to our children Jacob and Owen
and the one I pledge my life and love to.
From this day forward,
I promise to love, respect, and honor you.
I will listen to you,
and be open and honest with you.
I will be your trusted partner
and stand by you through good times and bad.
I promise this now
and for all the days of my life.

Chris to Katie:

Chris, do you take Katie to be your wife?
To be her partner in marriage and in life?
To love her and cherish her?
To be honest and faithful to her?
And to stand by Katie all the days of your life?

Chris responds: I do.

Katie to Chris:

Katie, do you take Chris to be your husband?
To be his partner in marriage and in life?
To love him and cherish him?
To be honest and faithful to him?
And to stand by Chris all the days of your life?

Katie responds: I do.

WISHING ROCK CEREMONY &
UNITY SAND CEREMONY Reverend, Couple & Guests

At this time, Sarah and Thomas will present a wishing rock to the people in the front rows who were a part of the ceremony processional, and if anyone else did not receive a rock upon entering the chapel, please raise your hand and they will come to present you with one as well.

I'm guessing that many of you are wondering about these rocks?

Katie & Chris chose to include the Wishing Rock Ceremony as part of their wedding today.

As I mentioned earlier, you are all here today because of your influence and importance to Katie, Chris and their family. The Wishing Rock ceremony is a symbolic way for them to carry your individual wishes and prayers with them throughout the journey that begins here.

As some of you may know, Chris, along with his wing man Jacob, proposed to Katie on a large rock in the middle of a river in the Adirondack Mountains - a place that has been, and surely will be, very special for this family forever.
The rocks you are holding today, were handpicked from those same waters in the Adirondacks. Hold the rock in the palm of your hand, wrap your fingers tightly around it. Take a moment to make a wish for this beautiful family. Shortly, you will return your rock and it will be placed in a container which the Garrow family will display in their home, to always remind them of your unending support and love.

As we give thanks for the love that brings Katie and Chris together, so too we recognize the merging of families taking place, and the additional love and support family and friends bring to this relationship. As part of their nature, Katie and Chris have chosen to include all of you in the Unity Sand Ceremony to acknowledge how important each of you are in their life.

Before they met, their lives were on different paths with different destinations. But love has brought them together and joined their separate paths into one. Together they will pour separate colors of sand into the container, symbolizing their responsibility to be the foundation on which their marriage is built. After your wishing rock has been collected, each of you will be presented with a vessel of sand to add to the container, representing your contribution to their lives.

Now I'd would like to invite Katie and Chris's nieces and nephews to join us at the altar.

(As Katie and Chris give them their items and help place them, Rev. reads…)

Brayden and Seamus will be standing closest to you holding baskets to receive your wishing rocks for Katie and Chris. After you place your rock in a basket, you will be greeted on the right side of the table by Georgia and Morgan, with your own vessel of sand to pour into the container. Once you have added your sand, Andrew will collect the containers and lids, and then you may return to your seats.

CEREMONY PERFORMED…AFTER LAST PERSON POURS SAND, RICHARD ASKS BRAYDEN AND SEAMUS TO BRING THE BASKETS OF ROCKS TO JACOB WHO WILL TAKE THEM AND DUMP THEM INTO THE BOX.

Music will end after Jacob pours rocks.

THEN AFTER THE LAST PERSON IS SEATED…

Finally to seal the connection between themselves and all of you, Jacob and Owen will pour the final layer of sand and place the top on the container. Much like the cherry completes an ice cream Sundae, Jacob and Owen's sand is what completes this union. Just as these grains of sand can never be separated and poured again into the original vessels, so will their marriage and family be united as one with all of you for all their days together.

Katie & Chris, all that was once separate is now shared, and in this sharing you both will find new strength and joy as together you forge a new life path and destination.

RING VOWS Reverend

Jacob, may I have the rings please?

[Jacob hands rings to Reverend.]

Wedding rings are an outward and visible sign of an inward spiritual grace, and the unbroken circle of love, signifying to all the union of Katie & Chris in marriage.
As often as either of you look upon these rings, may you be reminded of this moment and the love that you have promised to one another.

Chris, please repeat after me.

Katie, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion
and my choice to share my life with you.
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
today, tomorrow and forever.

Katie, please repeat after me.

Chris, I give you this ring,
as a symbol of my love and devotion
and my choice to share my life with you.
I give you this ring,
with the pledge to love you
today, tomorrow and forever.

REVEREND'S BEST WISHES Reverend

Katie & Chris, before I declare you husband and wife, I want to wish you both much love and happiness as you begin your new journey together.
Wherever you go, may you always return to your family in your togetherness.
May you two find in each other the love for which all souls long.

To make your marriage work will take love.
Love should be the core of your marriage; love is the reason you are here.
But it also will take trust — to know in your hearts that you want the best for each other.
It will take dedication to live by the vows you have made.
To stay open to one another, to learn and to grow together even when this is not always easy to do.
It will take faith to keep your promises.
To always be willing to go forward to tomorrow, never really knowing what tomorrow will bring.
And it will take commitment.
To hold true to the journey you have both pledged to share together.

DECLARATION OF MARRIAGE Reverend

Katie & Chris, for your marriage to be successful, you must each be loyal to the other, stand firm in your defense of each other and be supportive of one another's life goals and dreams. It is a solemn, binding, yet challenging relationship.

By your words today in this ceremony you have promised each other your undying love and have exchanged rings to wear as a sign of your everlasting commitment to each other.

Therefore, in accordance with the law of New Jersey, and by virtue of the authority vested in me, it is truly my joy and pleasure to pronounce you husband and wife.

Chris, you may kiss your bride.

Flowers handed back to Katie.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE Reverend

Family and friends, the ceremony is over so let the celebration begin.

Following the ceremony today, there will be a small brunch with their immediate family. However, tonight you're all invited to join them at 8pm at Connolly Station to help them celebrate.

Rev. explains that the bell in the chapel was cast by Mr. Allaire and it is rung 3 times for health, wealth and a long life together. Rev. asks Jacob to ring bell in closet three times.

But first, it is my honor and privilege to introduce to you for the first time in their new relationship as husband and wife Christopher & Katie.

Congratulations!

RECESSIONAL DJ / Nick

Bride & Groom exit first, Jacob will take Owen, then Parents, families, Reverend and guests.